gmhTODAY 04 gmhToday Sep Oct 2015 - Page 15

Our Performing Arts From tap, ballet, hip-hop to jazz semi-professional dancers whose passion for dance inspires. You and your kids can dance for fun, fitness, or to pursue dreams of fame. Or, enjoy dance as a spectator at performances throughout the year. Many a ballet fan has had that “aha moment” when, after seeing a local performance, they vow never again to trek up to San Jose or San Francisco. We’ve got the best of dance, right here. If more people danced, the world would be a healthier, happier and more peaceful place. In South County, you can start as a little tike and still enjoy dancing in your twilight years.  Our local dance studios and city recreation depart- ments offer it all – ballet, jazz, tap, hip- hop, line dancing and folk dance. Studio instructors include professional and BY ROBIN SHEPHERD South Valley Dance Arts South Valley Dance Arts (SVDA) is a not-for-profit, dance arts collaborative that offers recreational and competitive programs with instruction from beginner to pre-professional levels, taught by professional and semi-professional dancers. Instructors Juliet Smith and Tyler Spencer stepped in after SVDA founder Paula Valentine retired. Today, Smith and Tyler are joined by a company of other highly accomplished instructors in ballet as well as Ukrainian, musical theater and liturgical dance. “Dance movement is another form of language,” Smith said. “Our students learn clean and safe techniques, but they also learn to express the artist within,” Smith said. “There’s hard work and discipline, and a lot of joy in our dance programs.” Summer camp programs include pre-ballet (3 years and up) with storybook themes. Kids learn basic positions and movements and get the experience of dancing in costume. Ballet dancers begin their study in ballet slippers, and at the appropriate time based on age and skill level, they have the opportunity to advance to toe shoes, which allows them to dance “en pointe,” literally on their toes. Teenager Maddie Guinn studies ballet and modern dance at SVDA. She just received her pointe shoes a milestone in a young ballerina’s journey, and she hopes one day to dance as the Sugar Plum Fairy in the Nutcracker ballet. “My favorite thing about SVDA is the people. The teachers push you just enough so you can improve. You form friendships with other students, and everyone bands together to pull off a huge performance.” Participation in the SVDA Junior Company (pre-pointe), and Senior Company (pointe) is by invitation based on ability. Dancers in the 2014-15 Senior Company have received acceptances to the American Ballet Theater, San Fransisco Ballet, Dance Theater of Harlem, Kirov and Ballet Magnificat. Others have offered scholar- ships and acceptances to Santa Clara University, Boston University, Fordham [Z[X\ [ۙ][] ՑH[ٙ\Z[[[]\X[X]\[Y][[\]YH8$ZܘZ[X[[K[^H]Z[\]]H\]YHHZܘZ[X[[Hܘ[Kܛ[X\\]\KH\\ܛYY[\XB[]\K\HHY]\YH[[ՑH[X܂\[H\ZK'H]\][X[YYوZ[[Y\XB[[H\[]Y[H\HY\\\[B]ܘX\[ L8'H]ZZY 8'\[H[B[[ݙH][Y][HY[]ՑK8'\ZKܙ]\[\[[\[Y][][H[H[\X[][ۘ[[] YܙYY 8'x&]H]Y[ݙ\H^H\XK[[Y]\HX[\[ۈ܈Hٙ\[ۈ[܈[B[H[Y]و[H\H[][]KHܚ]\[[]][X^\Y[H[و\Y[H[X[ۈ\ܛX[H[[H[[Y[B[Y\]\X[Y[][X[ۋ'B'[Y][YHZܘZ[X[[Hܘ[K[]8&\[Hۙ]H\YX[H\K8'H]ZZY 8'ZܘZ[X[[H\\H[\]X[]Z\[Z[KY[[^[[ZܘZ[X[\YYXXKXXK[XXK'pY]HYX\ՑH]\[YH[][]H] BXX[\\ܛYY]\]H[YX][ۘ[][[KՑH[YH][X[\ܛX[HوH]ܘX\ۂX[X\ ][ ]][[YK'^H]ܚ]H[š\H[KBXX\\[B\[Y[B[[\ݙx)'BSH8(SԑSS8(SPTSTSPTБT MBZ^KBM