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Young Ballet Students Improve Technique at Florida Camp

Aug. 31, 2007 — Fifteen St. Croix girls started the ballet year with straighter backs and pointier toes, thanks to two weeks they spent this summer at a ballet camp in West Palm Beach, Fla.
The girls, all students at Music in Motion in Frederiksted and ages eight to 13, attended the Academy of Ballet Florida, an offshoot of the highly acclaimed Ballet Florida professional company.
"We learned techniques, responsibilities and different things," said Jessica Willock, 13, a student at Church of God Holiness Academy.
Three of the girls said technique was the most important thing they learned.
The girls came home with confidence, said Charlita Schuster, the artistic director at Music and Motion.
"They feel they really can dance, and their techniques are cleaner and more polished," she said.
Marcia Taylor, mother of two of the 15 girls, went along as a chaperone. It was a good experience for the girls, because it exposed them to life outside St. Croix, she said.
"They need to interact with kids their same age," Taylor said. The camp was good preparation for the years ahead, because the girls learned about living with people other than their families while staying in nearby Palm Beach Atlantic University college dorms, and how to travel, she said.
The girls learned how to show off their skills, something they were not used to doing in the less-competitive St. Croix ballet environment, Taylor said.
In addition to Willock and Taylor's two girls, Lily and Eva, other attendees were Cariece Brown, Jenna Queeley, Ashedah Acoy, Jahnilah Lawrence, Kedisha Charles Dyarah Powell, Allayeah JohnBaptiste, Kathleen Chelcher, Krischell Morcelo, Shynaia Phillip, Shamiyah Burke and Ymaniah Richards.
In addition to ballet techniques, the girls also studied jazz and tap, said Lily, 11, a student at Country Day School.
The girls, their parents and Music in Motion raised $1,175 per girl for the trip through food sales, raffles, special events, direct solicitation and donations from Economic Development Authority companies.
While ballet was the focus, the girls still had time for other activities. They went to the zoo and museums, and they went shopping at the mall.
"The most fun was when we went to the director's house and had a little get-together,” said Chercher, 11, a student at St. Patrick's Catholic School. “It was very fun.”
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Aug. 31, 2007 -- Fifteen St. Croix girls started the ballet year with straighter backs and pointier toes, thanks to two weeks they spent this summer at a ballet camp in West Palm Beach, Fla.
The girls, all students at Music in Motion in Frederiksted and ages eight to 13, attended the Academy of Ballet Florida, an offshoot of the highly acclaimed Ballet Florida professional company.
"We learned techniques, responsibilities and different things," said Jessica Willock, 13, a student at Church of God Holiness Academy.
Three of the girls said technique was the most important thing they learned.
The girls came home with confidence, said Charlita Schuster, the artistic director at Music and Motion.
"They feel they really can dance, and their techniques are cleaner and more polished," she said.
Marcia Taylor, mother of two of the 15 girls, went along as a chaperone. It was a good experience for the girls, because it exposed them to life outside St. Croix, she said.
"They need to interact with kids their same age," Taylor said. The camp was good preparation for the years ahead, because the girls learned about living with people other than their families while staying in nearby Palm Beach Atlantic University college dorms, and how to travel, she said.
The girls learned how to show off their skills, something they were not used to doing in the less-competitive St. Croix ballet environment, Taylor said.
In addition to Willock and Taylor's two girls, Lily and Eva, other attendees were Cariece Brown, Jenna Queeley, Ashedah Acoy, Jahnilah Lawrence, Kedisha Charles Dyarah Powell, Allayeah JohnBaptiste, Kathleen Chelcher, Krischell Morcelo, Shynaia Phillip, Shamiyah Burke and Ymaniah Richards.
In addition to ballet techniques, the girls also studied jazz and tap, said Lily, 11, a student at Country Day School.
The girls, their parents and Music in Motion raised $1,175 per girl for the trip through food sales, raffles, special events, direct solicitation and donations from Economic Development Authority companies.
While ballet was the focus, the girls still had time for other activities. They went to the zoo and museums, and they went shopping at the mall.
"The most fun was when we went to the director's house and had a little get-together,” said Chercher, 11, a student at St. Patrick's Catholic School. “It was very fun.”
Back Talk Share your reaction to this news with other Source readers. Please include headline, your name and city and state/country or island where you reside.