A Chance to Shine at Centennial: Dancing with the Staff

Today, March 31, 2022, Centennial will be hosting its annual “Dancing With the Staff” showcase. Students in the Dance Company each chose a staff member to perform a duet with. They choreograph a dance, practice it after school, and then present their dance in front of an audience as well as judges who will then decide which duo wins. The voters can put up to two votes on who they think had the best dances, and the winning duo receives a trophy. 

The audience is always excited to watch, and the competitors are always hungry to win. Liz O’connor, a guidance counselor, and her partner, Ivy Chen, seem to be well prepared for the show. “I actually saw in the video of Mrs. O’connor dancing and she looked really fluid and smooth, so they looked really good,” English teacher Kristin Lavender stated. Students and staff members have a lot of fun working with each other, and it is always a  surprise how well the staff members here at Centennial can dance. “…they come in and they’re like doing cartwheels or drops on to the floor and i’m always amazed,” Rebecca Clark, the Centennial dance teacher and Dancing with the Staff organizer exclaimed. 

After almost two years of virtual showcases, the dancers are most excited to be back on stage performing in front of a live audience. Senior Mikayla Maleh said, “im looking forward to be performing back on stage again with an audience after a long time of not being able to.”

“I think my favorite thing is the actual show itself. Seeing the staff members on stage and the moment that my students become the experts and they’re demonstrating their specialty,” Clark explained. 

Even though there are many things to look forward to, there are also some things that the dancers and organizers struggle with. Lavender, who is dancing with junior Yini Ying, stated, “I like to dress up and I like the night of excitement. Practicing with my already busy schedule is hard for me to do in order to fit the rehearsals in.” Lavender has performed in this showcase one other time, eight years ago. She explained that she is not the best dancer, but she goes up on stage anyways. “I’m not a good dancer so it’s a real big hit to my pride to go up there, make a fool of myself, and that part is difficult,” she joked. 

Dancing with the Staff all started with just a class project for Dance Company, but more and more people were interested in being a part of it and being able to watch it. “[Dance Company members] would have to select staff members or teachers that were planning during their class period and they actually came down and performed during our final exam time so we did this big final exam and it was this big presentation or concert that they did. And then people got sad because they couldn’t come and see it and that when it became a thing,” Clark explained. Now it is a bigger experience because more groups such as Junior Company, announcers, and judges are a part of it as well. 

“They have brought their A-game, this is their pathway, and this is them going for the trophy,” Clark concluded.


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