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M-A dance team is well known and loved by all bears, but not all great M-A dancers have joined the team. Junior Kelly Warren decided to not join the dance team, but has been dancing for 14 years and competing for about ten years in ballet, jazz, lyrical, contemporary, tap, musical theater, and even acrobatics.

Warren’s mother enrolled her in her first ballet classes when she was three or four years old because she believed dancing would be a fun activity for her daughter. Warren commented that as a young girl she continued to dance because she “wanted to be like her older sister,” who danced as well.

Warren doing a Calypso during a dance tournament. Photo Credit: Star Power Dance Competition.

As she got older her love for dancing grew and Warren learned to appreciate dancing not because it was something her sister liked, but because she wanted to dance. Jokingly she also added that she “wasn’t good at any sports,” so she continued dancing because she had no other active outlet.

Since then, Warren has loved being a part of the dance team at Bay Area Dance School where she feels the “team is always striving to improve” and that the girls genuinely care about each other.

She recounted her favorite performance, a group dance to “Oh My God You Guys” from Legally Blonde. It was Warren’s first competition dance and she was “super excited to dance with all the older girls on the team.” Warren continued, “we got to wear really sparkly pink costumes which was a major bonus since my favorite color was, and still is, pink.”

When asked about one of her favorite moments in dance, while she remembered specifically one time when she was in seventh grade the announcer of the competition called her up on stage to answer live interview questions because she was entered to win a title. After getting through basic questions such as: “what is your favorite style of dance?” they progressed to less conventional questions.

Warren leaps up in a dance pose. Photo Credit: Rachel Neville.

Warren remembered that they asked her, “if [she] could be any animal what would [she] be?”

Warren commented, “I said that I would want to be a sloth which was probably the most bizarre answer they had every heard; other girls that answered the same question all said that they wanted to be hummingbirds or swans so my answer was just slightly out of place.”

To become great at dancing Warren has put in a significant amount of time, sweat, and effort. Warren goes to dance classes almost every day, either regular dance classes or competition practices for a total of around 13 hours a week. On top of that, Warren goes to about six competitions a year including Showstoppers, Nuvo, LA Dance Magic, and 24/Seven. While Warren has loved dancing, its huge time commitment has prevented her from doing other activities. For this reason, Warren does not think she will continue dancing in college but instead try new things.

While Warren may stop dancing she said that some of her best memories have come from dance. Furthermore, she commented that dancing has allowed her “to meet a ton of amazing and genuine people from all across the country.”

Kelly Warren showing her strength as she holds a pose. Photo Credit: Danielle De Ojeda.

Dance, Warren explained, “is all about discipline,” and has taught her about perseverance and determination, and that “there is always room for improvement.”

 

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