A group of young dancers from Move This! Dance Studio performed for a roomful of parents and seniors at Ayre Manor on Dec. 15.
The 25-minute show was divided into four sequences, based on the theme of Santa’s toy shop.
The first act featured Santa’s elves playfully frolicking during their break from the workshop, followed by chic harlequin dolls, tap dancing robots and Santa’s puppets gone wild.
Performers ranged in age from three to 16.
The Ayre Manor performance was the first community event for Move This! Dance Studio, but it won’t be the last, according to Niki Martin, studio founder and artistic director.
“We’ve had year-end shows here, where we sort of put on a big show on stage, but that’s it. We haven’t done a lot of community performing and it’s something I’d like to do more of,” she said.
Martin added Ayre Manor was selected because it was local.
“For me personally, giving back to the community, I try to keep it local because this is where we live, this is where we all grow up,” she said.
Hosting performances also provides an opportunity for dancers to improve and build their confidence.
“For some of them, I get emails and phone calls the night before and [they say] they’re not coming, and they’re too nervous and they can’t do it,” Martin said.
“But they always show up and they always do a great job and that’s how you get better.”
Although nervous, the younger dancers, who improvised their movements, flawlessly circled, swayed and leaped across the makeshift stage.
“The music guides them, which is actually a double-edged sword because on the one hand, it’s more free and on the other hand it leaves a lot more up to the dancer,” Martin said.
Although a modest production, the young performers received repeated applause from the audience.