It’s hard to say good bye to our graduation seniors. Best wishes on your future endeavors and remember the door is always open for you at Dance Inc.
Our first 2020 Senior Spotlight is on Lizzie Adams. Lizzie says she wishes her time at the studio could last longer. The years she has spent at Dance Inc. mean more to her than she can express and the thanks everyone who has been part of her journey. We will miss your patience and persistence, not to mention your solid ballet skills. Good Luck to you Lizzie and remember, the door is always open for you at Dance Inc. In her own words: I know that years ago the decision to take a dance class was not mine, for I was too little and I’m pretty sure my mother simply wanted to dress me up like a little ballerina. Years after that fateful day, I made the decision to continue with the classes, and (eventually) to attend Dance Inc. Now, as my time at the studio is coming to a close, I find myself wishing that it could last longer. I want to thank everyone here, because each and every one of you has made my decision worthwhile. Each class, combo, routine, and workout taught me strength, endurance, and patience. All of my teammates and teachers have challenged me to branch out and grow. My experiences here have taught me more than I could’ve ever imagined and I will carry them with me throughout the rest of my life.
Sophie Stinnett has been part of our Dance Inc. family since she was 11 years old. Although she has taken all style of dance, hip hop has always been her favorite. Sophie says she is grateful for the “community of kind and loving people who I can always come visit at Dance Inc.” We wish Sophie all the best as she attends the University of Missouri Columbia in the fall and plans to major in pre-law. In her own words: I came to Dance Inc. and joined the competition team when I was 11. I started out with just one dance, hip hop, my favorite. Seven years later, I have been in jazz, ballet, contemporary, and more. With the help of my teachers Natalie, Camaron, and Miss Shannon, I was able to expand my knowledge and dance abilities tremendously. Through the skills I learned at the studio, I made my high school dance team at Parkway Central. I also found some of my very best friends through the classes at Dance Inc. Leaving the studio and Saint Louis will be challenging, but I know I have a community of kind and loving people who I can always come visit at Dance Inc. I will be attending the University of Missouri Columbia in the fall and plan to major in pre-law. Thank you for all of the great years!
Leah Cason has not only found a second home in her three short years at Dance Incorporated, but also a group of “friends and sisters.” She thanks her instructors for shaping her into the dancer she is today and also for making her “feel comfortable in her own skin.” Leah will continue dancing as member of the Missouri State Sugar Bears Dance Team. Leah, we will miss your hard work and dedication. We will also miss one of the very best prop-families we have ever had - thank you Rob and Stephanie Cason!
In her own words:
Dance Incorporated has become my second home. Although I only had three amazing years at the studio, I am proud to say I made bonds and memories I will forever cherish.
I would like to thank Anna Minichiello, Monica Zesch, Ellie Chamberlin, Ellie Alexander, Eleanor Woods, Sophie Stinnett, Colette Roller, and my built-in sister Ava Cason for becoming my best friends and sisters. Each one of you has made a huge impact in my life and I couldn’t be more thankful. I’m so glad we were able to share so many memories together and I can’t wait to make more. I will never forget the funny moments we had in class... those were always interesting. Things were always falling out of our pockets... LOL sorry. Long live Girthies and GGTT!! Also, a special thank you to the 2019 senior class! I will forever miss and love you guys!
I would also like to thank my teachers and choreographers, Natalie Williams, Cameron Ballard, Shannon Lee West, Miranda Payne, Tyrus Watson, and Michael Burke for shaping me into the dancer I am today. I wouldn’t be where I am without your willingness to teach. You have all pushed my body and mind to its fullest potential. As I continue my dance career, I will forever cherish every teaching moment I had in class. Thank you for making me feel comfortable in my own skin. Even though I am a perfectionist, thank you for helping me realize that perfection isn’t everything. Coloring outside the lines can be fun too:)
Hey Mom, Dad, Aunt Karin, and Uncle Keith... Thank you so much for your love and endless support. I wouldn’t be the dancer I am today without your constant pep talks, congratulations, and hugs and kisses. I am so thankful to have you guys in the audience cheering Ava and I on at every performance. Mom, thank you for never giving up on me and for pushing me to my fullest potential. Dad, thank you for teaching me that kindness, respect, and leadership is an important skill to have no matter what the case is. Thank you, Mom and Dad, for sacrificing so much so I can do the thing I love most. Aunt Karin, thank you for your bubbly and supportive attitude and for always making me feel optimistic. Uncle Keith, thank you for always bringing your hilarious personality... on and off-stage LOL. Also, thanks for being the BEST PROP PARENTS EVER!
Lastly, thank you Dance Incorporated for providing the amazing facilities, costumes, teachers, and much more. A special thank you to Ms. Margaux for always being a helping hand. Thank you, Dance Incorporated, for becoming my forever home.
Julie Leung has been a part of the Dance Inc. family for as long as she can remember. Julie will dearly miss dancing alongside her teammates and teachers who have been such a big part of her life. Congratulations to Julie, who will be attending the University of California Irvine in the fall to major in chemistry. Julie, we will miss your quiet grace, grit, beauty and talent. In her own words: I have been going to Dance Inc. for as long as I can remember. It is a place that has helped to shape me to be who I am today, and much of my confidence has blossomed due to this studio. I will miss dancing dearly along with all of my teammates and teachers who have been a big part of my life. My favorite dance that I have performed is “River” from my sophomore year because I felt the most empowered on stage then. My favorite production was the “Fosse” production because the rehearsing and classes in preparation were fun, and the end results gave off amazing visuals. I will never forget the summer that the power went out during opener rehearsals for “Dance Without Prejudice,” and all the fans were brought in and doors were opened. I am thankful for my friends and family for always supporting me at my many performances, for Delaney for putting me in the front row for the first time (even though I was always off beat ;), for Ms. Ashley Claybrook for boosting my confidence through privates, for Ms. Shannon for always bringing out my strengths, and for Ms. Natalie for pushing me past my limits. I plan on attending University of California Irvine in the fall with a major of chemistry. My official dance career will be ending at Dance Inc., but my love and appreciation for the art will never end. (and I may join a dance club for fun too 😉
Our final senior spotlight is on Monica Zesch. Monica has been an part of our Dance Inc. family for 14 years, not only as a student, but also as an instructor. Monica says, “I’ve formed some of the most beautiful friendships at Dance Incorporated, and each one has shown me the importance of compassion and unity in dance.” She is incredibly grateful for the unwavering support of her family, particularly from her sister, Mia. Monica, we are so proud of you as you continue your dance education at Boston Conservatory. Fly little bird, but don’t forget the nest. In her own words: My journey at Dance Incorporated started as a 4-year-old in Saturday-morning Tiny Tot class. Little Monica never would have imagined that enrolling in that class would shape the rest of her life. The memories I made over the next 15 years at the studio are countless, and I’ll cherish them forever.
I’ve formed some of the most beautiful friendships at Dance Incorporated, and each one has shown me the importance of compassion and unity in dance. I want to sincerely thank each teacher and guest instructor I had the privilege to learn from, but three particular mentors have molded me into the dancer I am today: Camaron, Natalie and Shannon. You always believed in me, even the times I didn’t believe in myself. Camaron, I’d come out of your class sweating buckets but totally energized because you pushed me to be the best I could be; thank you! Natalie, after being in your classes for four years, you taught me that being confined by one way of movement is pointless and that versatility is meaningful. I’ll miss you, gal pal. And finally, Miss Shannon, when you arrived at the studio, my whole perspective of “what dance is” evolved. You taught me that grace and strength have a reciprocal relationship in movement. I’m incredibly grateful for all your guidance. And if it weren’t for Mrs. Ellie investing in her studio and setting such high standards, I wouldn’t have met all these amazing people. Thank you, Mrs. Ellie, for giving me a second home where I learned to fall in love with dance.
Most of all, I want to thank my family. Words can’t express how grateful I am for my parents’ unwavering support and love. You made my dreams possible, and I promise to make you proud. And to my sister, Mia, I’m not sure where to begin. Whether we were dancing together or competing separately, you’ve always been my biggest supporter. You continue to push me out of my comfort zone and help me grow in every area of my life. I could not be more thankful to have a best friend and sister like you.
I believe God puts people into your life for a purpose. And if it weren’t for Him leading my path to all of these wonderful individuals, I wouldn’t be where I am today.
I’m excited to announce I will be attending my dream school this fall, Boston Conservatory, to continue my dance education. And wherever that road leads next, I’m grateful for the wind beneath my wings that was provided by Dance Incorporated.