Monday, October 26, 2009

In step with the CHS Ballroom Dance Club

From the Crestview News Bullentin (FL):

by Brian Hughes

Thursday afternoon at 2:30 the music cranked up at Crestview’s Fred Astaire Dance Studio. Nearly a dozen couples took to the dance floor and under the expert tutelage of instructor Crickett Gautreaux, they were soon going through the paces of basic ballroom dance moves and etiquette.

It’s time for the weekly meeting of the Crestview High School ballroom dance club, now in its third year. The studio donates each week’s 45-minute gathering, including the expertise of its instructors. Last Thursday was only the third time the club has met this year, so many members are still getting the hang of ballroom dance.

“Because this group is just getting started, first they must coordinate the mind with the body,” explained studio owner and manager David Colón. “Then we can start doing choreography. Routines can come later.”

Those who are dedicated can dance in a spring showcase, Colón said. Last year the club had several couples perform in a countywide dance showcase at the Hilton Hotel in Destin.

The club’s adviser, choral music director Kevin Lusk, periodically heads out into the midst of the swirling bodies to offer a little instruction of his own. He didn’t intend to be the club’s sponsor.

“They needed someone to be a co-sponsor,” Lusk explained. But when the other faculty co-sponsor dropped out after a week, the club’s sponsorship fell on his shoulders.

CHS seniors Moya Moore and George DeShields paused for a break, and while resting explained how they became members of the club.

“I’ve been in sports a lot and I wanted to try something new,” said Moore.
DeShields, who has experience in hip hop, tap and ballet, just enjoys dancing. Noticing the girls outnumbered the guys, I asked DeShields if some guys are intimidated being in the dance club.

“I don’t know,” he answered, as he headed back out onto the floor. “I know I’m not!”

Kody Lusk, a junior, is another who finds the club a fun co-curricular activity.

“I like to dance and I thought it would be fun to work with professionals,” he said.

Kody Lusk, whose dad, yes, is the club’s adviser, has been in the club for all three of his years at CHS. He is excited by the large turnout this year.
“Last year it kind of dwindled but this year I’m excited to see we’re back up in numbers,” he said.

The 45-minute session seems to fly right by. As the kids break up for the day, several return to the floor with Gautreaux or instructor Scott Seip, a CHS alumnus himself, to perfect the steps they learned that day.
Colón smiles to see another generation of dancers being groomed in his studio. “Maybe some of them will become instructors themselves someday,” he said thoughtfully.

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