This summer has been dedicated to dance for Alma High School Junior and Elite team member Katy Arnold. With the support of DuHadway Dance Dimensions instructors and family, Katy had a whirlwind summer of accomplishments.
In July, Katy performed her solo and her duo with dance partner, Kayla Tabor, at StarQuest Nationals in Sandusky, Ohio. Two weeks later, Katy traveled to Wisconsin Dells, Wisconsin to compete at Celebration Nationals. At Celebration, Katy took two solos, one of which she started working on in early June with instructor Rachel Pawson. Having traveled to Las Vegas, Nevada for Nationals the previous summer, Katy stated, “After going to Vegas by myself, I can go anywhere. I like going to different places to see new competitors and styles.”
In the month of July, Katy studied Grade Level V Cecchetti Method, tested and passed her exam to earn her professional certificate. She also auditioned and practiced with Third Coast Dance Company to prepare for the performance in In The Blue Hour alongside of many of her teammates.
In August, Miss Jillian and Miss Aubrey invited Katy to help with the St. Johns Dance Camp. Throughout the camp, Katy was asked to demonstrate and help their dancers with choreography. This was a great opportunity for Katy to experience what it is like on the teacher-side of dance. Katy said, “I did a lot of standing and my feet hurt more than if I was dancing. It was a great experience to see if this is something I would be interested in doing. I really appreciate Miss Jillian and Miss Aubrey giving me this opportunity. Plus, I really liked meeting the St. Johns team.”
A surprise invitation occurred while Katy was preparing for her second Nationals, as Charlie DuHadway invited Katy to be part of his tap piece for the Young Choreographers Competition for Motor City Tap Fest in Detroit. Because Katy was not always available at the studio, she learned part of the piece through video Charlie posted. When Katy was at the studio, you could find her practicing with her teammates to clean the piece. “Being able to perform with Charlie in a tap piece for the very first time was so cool. He is an amazing dancer and I was really honored to be a part of this big opportunity for him. To hear the judges talk about him and his choreography was a big deal. I am so excited to dance for him this season.”
Katy did have to miss a few punch card classes this summer due to traveling/performing AND for having all 4 wisdom teeth removed in between Wisconsin Nationals and her Cecchetti exam. As for guest artists classes, Katy was always there. “If you are not there, you are not getting better. If you are there but not truly focused and working, you are not getting any better either. I tell myself as I go to dance, I am going to work to be better at what I love to do. If there is an extra class, I am going to take it. When a teacher tells me I need to do something, whether I like it or not, I have learned through experience they are making me a better dancer, teammate and leader.”