Danceworks: A Dance Concert for Children

(Photo: Gustavo Garcia)

by Hannah Culliton


At five years old, taking a trip to the ballet might trigger some yawns, but WCC has found a way to make dance a fun and exciting experience for all ages.

On Sunday Jan 31, Danceworks for Children, a WCC dance company, hosted a dance concert specifically for children’s entertainment.

The concert stood out from the typical ballet performance; throughout its entirety, audience participation was encouraged.

Mollyann Franzblau, director and choreographer for Danceworks for Children, helped the audience learn the dance moves from the show right in their seats. The audience performed a wave, pretended to be trees, wind and many other things that made the children in the audience giggle.

After the audience learned the moves in their seats, Franzblau invited all of the children up on the stage to show off their new moves alongside the dance company. The children’s parents raced to the bottom of the stage to snapshot those precious moments.

The kids swayed, rocked, and jumped along with Franzblau and her company, having a good time while learning how to be dancers.

When the kids finished their performance and returned to their seats, the dancers from the company performed a much harder, rehearsed version of what the kids had learned.

This sequence was repeated three times with three different dances. The first dance was a modern dance called Cross Current which represented trees, water, and wind.

The second dance showed the robotic-like people of daily New York City life, called Sometime City Feeling; the third, called Just Keep Going, was a jazz routine with lots of leaps and jumps.

The steps the children learned included jumps, the sillies, second position (a ballet stance), and much more.

“A lot of the moves, [they] were really cool,” said Mirissa Benson, a child from the audience.
Her mother, Jennifer Benson, like many of the other parents, enjoyed the show because it was different, according to her.

“It’s great for kids, there’s nothing else like it,” said Benson.

“It was a great experience. I liked seeing the crowd’s face when we actually do the steps. I thought it was really cool,” said Darrell Bell, a dancer from the company.

According to Mike Franzblau, Mollyann Franzblau’s husband, Danceworks has been around for thirty-six years and is still going strong.

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