RANDOLPH – A Randolph area dance studio is getting ready to take part in an international competition next week.
Expressions Performing Arts Center will be competing in the World Dance Championships in Secaucus, New Jersey on Monday.
The studio’s owner Melissa Anderson says qualifying for this competition is no easy task.
“It is the Star Dance alliance, which comprises several of the major dance competition circuits in the United States.” says Anderson. “They take all of their regional winners from all over the world. That is the only way you get to compete there, is if you get an invite.”
This is not the first time the group has been called to the competition, in fact, over the years they have competed, and done quite well.
“We’ve been really blessed and really lucky,” says Anderson. “We never in a million years expected when we got the first bid this was going to happen. We thought that was really great and that it was awesome, then we came back the next year and it happened again. Every year a few more groups qualify.”
Not only fueled by their successes, the group shares the further impact the studio has had on their lives.
18-year-old Brianna Winship and 13-year-old Madelyn Connor say that being able to dance in addition to the coaches’ support have also supported them in many mental health aspects.
“When I say that Melissa is a second mother to me I am not lying,” says Winship. “For everything out of dance, whether it’s struggling in school, mentally, or even friend problems, she does not hesitate to jump on it and help you out no matter what it is.”
“When I’m stuck at home, or when I’m dealing with online school, or being isolated from the outside world. I am able to come here and be with my second family,” says Connor. “It has helped me to release a lot of anxiety and pressure.”
Ten-year-old Peyton Hale explains that she’s extremely grateful to be able to dance.
“I’m really happy that I dance here, we have great teachers here, and all my friends are here,” says Hale. “I’m really excited that we get to compete this year.”
They will have four dances performing next week, including their Senior Tap, Senior Jazz, the Pom Group, and an additional Senior Tap Group.