Disneyland, a whole new world for local dancers 0
Following months of preparation and dancer training-gearing up for their Disney Dance the Magic experience-dancing through the streets of Disneyland was indeed a whole new world for the young dancers, parents and Turning Pointe Dance studio staff.
Dressed all in turquoise and with smiles befitting the happiest place on earth, our local dancers-along with 900 other dancers-grooved down the streets of Disneyland and California Adventure.
Tara Fenton-Groves, Turning Pointe Dance studio owner, recalled the exciting and emotional July experience and what it was like to watch the parade.
"The parade route was packed with people," Fenton-Groves said. "They follow up with a big Disney parade so people are lined up ready for that parade. There was wall-to-wall people."
In both of the parades, the dancers swayed and moved to Selena Gomez' popular song Shake it Up. While the Turning Pointe dancers were in turquoise, there were seven vibrant colours with 100 dancers outfitted in each shade.
"We had to teach their choreography for the parade before we went and we had to make sure everything was the same as everyone else," she noted.
Months before meeting Mickey, Minnie, Peter Pan and many of the Disney princesses, staff and students and Turning Pointe Dance studio were hard at work gearing up for their two parades and Disneyland showcase.
Dancing for 28 to 30 minutes at a time is not simple, explained Fenton-Groves and the students were staging mock parades in the streets of Hillcrest as a form of training.
Once in Disneyland, the students were nervous for their dress rehearsal, as they had to dance in front of Disneyland as well as Dance the Magic staff. The young dancers had two parades and then a showcase where they danced their own material.
"I was nervous too, because I didn't know what to expect," Fenton-Groves said. "They did fantastic. They didn't even have any changes made to them. They were all very nervous for that rehearsal."
After the work was done, family members, dancers and staff enjoyed the opportunity to visit both theme parks and to meet the most famous mouse of them all-Mickey Mouse himself.
"It was the older kids who were the ones jumping and running, saying 'Guess who we saw," Fenton-Groves said. "It was the little and the big kids (who were excited)."
Though their Disneyland experience ended mid July, Fenton-Groves said students are still posting pictures up on Facebook in an attempt to recapture some of the magic.
"For me, (the most exciting part) was probably seeing them coming down the parade route," she said. "(That) was the highlight for me and for many of the parents."
Turning Pointe Dance studio regular classes start again during the week of Sept. 10 and staff members are looking forward to ballet exams, the annual Festival of the Stars and the year-end show.