Written by Kristin Herron Friday, 04 July 2014 00:00
Gone Dancing celebrated its eighth year in Oyster Bay with its annual recital, held at St. Dominic’s auditorium on Saturday, June 21. With nearly 200 registered students, one recital would be too long. To solve that problem, Carrie Kirincic and Caitlin Malley presented two separate shows. The second show sold out days in advance.
Representing the culmination of a year’s worth of preparation for children as young as age 2, the shows highlighted many different styles of dance: ballet, lyrical, jazz, tap, hip hop, acro, and even break-dancing.
As Malley said, “The recital is something the teachers and the kids work for all year. This was our eighth recital and every year it keeps getting better and better. They are a lot of work but in the end it’s all about the kids and helping them build up their confidence.”
Both recitals kicked off with the Gone Dancing Company presenting an homage to the 1980s with “What a Feeling.” Dressed in neon shirts and leg warmers, the 33 dancers energized the auditorium.
Featuring lifts and the breakdancing skills of 8-year-old Charlie Dickman of Bayville, the opening number set just the right tone.
Malley noted, “We picked ‘What a Feeling’ because it was a great song, really fun and upbeat. The song is about finding something you love and making it happen, and that is what the studio is to us.”
Some of the youngest performers may have been overwhelmed by their first times on stage in front of more than 400 audience members, but they persevered with great aplomb.
Six-year-old Camille Torres of Oyster Bay said, “I love, love, loved my first dance recital! It was so fun to be on stage and my favorite was to do my final split in front of everybody!”
The beautiful narrative dance “Another Cinderella Story” featured the trio of Grace Barrios, Meghan Kelly and Shannon Walsh, with each girl representing a different phase of Cinderella’s life. Meghan Kelly also joined Georgia Pappalardo and Mary Vera for the graceful lyrical dance “100 Years.”
Soloists Cailin Andrasick, Grace Barrios, Lily Dickman, Jane Gurney, Meghan Kelly, Alessandra Martorella, Molly McGee and Brittany Schiavone all received resounding applause.
To keep things fresh and exciting, Gone Dancing has introduced additional teachers to its roster. Franklin Chen leads the breakdancing class, with a group of young dancers performing feats that caused one audience member to say, “How do they do that?!”
Kelly Reilly instructs Acro class. Set to the beat of “Circus Afro” from the film Madagascar 3, the dance featured cartwheels, tumbles and a pyramid of dancers. As 7-year-old Julia Noboa of Oyster Bay said, “I
like when we did the Acro because it was fun. You got to do gymnastics.”
Lauren Fetkowitz’s unique choreography adds even more dimension to the studio and recital. The senior competition team danced magnificently to the Afro-Brazilian number “Maghalena.” The mini-team—all first-graders—interpreted friendships through the lyrical piece “Remember Me This Way.”
Kirincic and Malley jointly choreographed dances by the two junior teams. It was clear why the Junior 1 Team received a special award for the “Sassiest” number at one of the team’s three competitions this year for their energy and cohesion in “Conga.” The Junior 2s sparkled in purple sequins and fringe. The interplay of Charlie Dickman’s moves and Liana Giannuzzi’s acrobatics made for a fun interlude in “Hit the Road, Jack.”
Gone Dancing offers camps and classes during the summer and will start back with a full roster of classes in the fall. Competition team try-outs will be held in August. After eight years studying dance at
Gone Dancing, 10-year-old Shannon Walsh wouldn’t go anywhere else.
“I love dancing,” she said. “The people who work and dance here are like family to me.”