Prince Rupert dancers get a taste of Broadway

The dancers gather at Steps on Broadway Studio. - Contributed photo
The dancers gather at Steps on Broadway Studio.
— image credit: Contributed photo

Big dreams, big city.

Spectrum City Dance students got to see what the heart of the American theatre industry has to offer during a trip to New York City earlier this month. Ten dancers between the ages of 11 and 17 trained at a Broadway dance studio and got to see a number of Broadway performances while they were in the Big Apple.

"It was such a positive experience," said Ella Ferland, Spectrum City Dance owner and teacher, who was one of the chaperones of the trip.

"The purpose of the trip was to broaden horizons and let students know they're part of a larger world."

Each day of the trip students attended musical theatre workshops and participated in daily vocal training sessions at Steps on Broadway, the largest dance studio in NYC. The Prince Rupert dancers also participated in daily technique classes for ballet, jazz, lyrical or tap, learning from some of the studio's highly-trained faculty.

The dancers also met up with Calen Kurka, a former Rupertite who used to train at Spectrum City Dance. Kurka is now the executive/artistic director of ":pushing progress" in New York City, which Ferland said was a good motivator for the young dancers.

"It was exceptionally encouraging for the kids because they got to talk to somebody from our small town who's made it in New York and is working in the field that they all love. He talked to them about having a dream and holding onto it and the discipline that takes," she said.

"It just happened that one of his groups was part of a performance on Saturday night, so we went to his rehearsal ... that was an awesome experience on its own."

Aside from honing their dancing skills, the group attended Broadway Productions including Matilda, Pippin and Newsies, went on a New York City bus tour and visited the American Museum of Natural History.

Spectrum dancers returned to Prince Rupert on March 22.

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