Dance teachers refine their craft in Vegas

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Mary Cable

Ms. Cable, Mr. Girlinghouse, and Mrs. Williams pose in Vegas.

Cami Culbertson, Staff Writer

Three of Kinkaid’s dance teachers felt what it is like to be a student again.

Mrs. Mary Cable, Mrs. Danyale Williams, and Mr. Aaron Girlinghouse went to Las Vegas to attend an international dance conference for dance teachers and dancers from all across the world.

 The conference consisted of all types of different classes from music cutting to tap dancing and classes were taught by famous names in the dance world like Liz Imperio, a choreographer for Jennifer Lopez and Madonna, and James Whiteside, a member of the American Ballet Theatre

It was a space for dance teachers to connect with one another and bond over their unique experiences in the dance world while learning what’s relevant.

“It is refreshing to be around like-minded people and know that we all have the same struggle,” Mrs. Williams said. “We celebrate each other’s triumphs and there’s no real competition.”

Mrs. Williams, who teaches men’s dance and advanced dance at Kinkaid, has been attending dance conferences for years after hearing about the offerings in Dance Magazine. But having her colleagues come with her created a moment for them to develop more closeness among them. 

Over the span of the school year, the dance teachers give so much to focus on the performance of their students that they don’t always get a chance to focus on themselves. 

Though the three teachers have all been formally educated in dance, it was helpful to be back in the position of the student again.

“Teachers want to continue being educated,” said Mrs. Cable, who teaches the Intermediate and Beginning Dance classes. 

Because dance is constantly evolving and changing, conferences like the one Kinkaid’s dance teachers attended are one way for teachers to know what is relevant and trending in the dance world. 

“There are some things that we were taught that there’s no way that I would teach my students nowadays because that’s why I had two bad knees and had a torn Achilles,” Mrs. Williams said. 

Mrs. Williams attended classes on how to spot and teach aerials after requests from her students last spring.  

She said she hopes to open windows and opportunities for students, even if it might not be as a dancer. 

“We just think the only thing you can do as a dancer is choreograph or teach,” Mrs. Williams said. “But there’s so many other arenas that you can go into.”