YOUNG DANCERS’ PROGRAM
Every Saturday morning, our building comes alive with the hustle and bustle of young dancers as they get ready for their dance classes! For seven years, 11 year-old Miles Fallick has been a part of this group, dancing every Saturday as a student in our Young Dancers’ Program (YDP). The YDP is a non-competitive program designed to introduce children and young people ages 3 to 17 to creative movement and contemporary dance. Dancers are encouraged, both individually and in groups, to explore the dance experience in a focused and fun environment. The program centres around young dancers’ imaginative and creative potential, and aims to develop each child’s full expressiveness through movement.
Miles is a compelling young dancer. She modestly goes about taking class with remarkable concentration. She dives into each class, while adeptly catching all the moments available to be creative with what she is working on. When watching her, one sees her musical awareness harmoniously in sync with the movement she is doing. Each year, Miles is here, growing by leaps and bounds – into her dance form and awareness.
We sat down with Miles and her parents, Chris and Mary, and asked them what they enjoyed most about the program:
Miles – “I really enjoy how Michelle [Silagy] is able to take time to go through the movements with us, and is able to spend time with each student. I also love that the musician plays so many different rhythms for us, rather than going through a playlist or CD of recorded music.”
Mary – “I love that the program is all about pure movement and dance, and nothing else. It’s really nice to see the inclusion of so many people of different backgrounds who are welcome in the program – it is absolutely amazing. Oh – and of course, the music!”
Chris – “There are very few barriers to the availability of the program to the community. I really love to see the joy that Miles gets out of the program, and how much she’s growing.”
In addition to her time at YDP, Miles says “I dance every day! I also take ballet classes.”
When asked if there was something (in dance) she felt that she does here at the School, but does not do anywhere else, Miles discussed how she appreciated the freedom during class, and the time that was spent on each movement – “I feel that you can just go, do it, remember it, keep doing it, and then go further – we don’t always just go on to the next thing.”
Her parents also chimed in with their thoughts…
Chris – “Regardless if the movement is right or not, you can tell when Miles is truly feeling it. I think, to me, that is the essence of what I see and what I feel here. The School creates a space where kids can let go – without judgement.”
Mary – “When I walk into the space, I can just feel the creativity. From the moment you open the door, everywhere you look – there’s something in the air here! It’s also nice to come in and see other performers/professionals coming through the building.”
Some advice for prospective YDP students:
Miles – “I think they should try it out, and if they feel like they are not enjoying it, they should keep coming – because it gets way more fun!”
Сhris – “You know, it’s not that every child is going to go on to become a professional dancer, but to have the impact and joy of the movement and live music – I feel like everybody should experience this. I think in this context, it is very freeing. Movement and musicality comes first.”
Mary – “The program is so open and inclusive. Dance is for everybody! That’s what I love about this program. It is definitely a safe space to be expressive.”
Thank you Michelle, Chris, Mary, and Miles for sharing your thoughts and stories!
Interested in joining the YDP family?
Our NEW online registration opens on December 16! Learn more at https://schooloftdt.org/ydp/