Fallon teen performs in first local show
June 5, 2018
With a newfound passion for dancing, 13-year-old Teigan Johnson is taking the stage for the first time, along with her dance team, for Stars On Maine's debut performance.
But it's not only the fact Johnson is performing for the first time; she's making dancing possible with spina bifida occulta, a defect of bones in the spine.
Johnson was born with this defect and it's genetically carried, but she wasn't diagnosed until she was 4 years old.
Due to the disorder and growth spurts in adolescence, this causes the spinal nerve to stretch—which brings numbness to parts of the body.
But once Johnson discovered her passion for dancing, she's not letting it bring her down.
"Dancing is the world to me and it's all I want to do," she said. "I want to be a choreographer someday."
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Johnson also is taking the front of the stage during the performance with her team. Eight members including Johnson and her sister, Graysen, will be dancing to a series of songs that tell a story. The theme and genre of the music focus on rising to the top and becoming a star.
"She's just mighty," said her mother Merilee Johnson, founder of Stars on Maine.
Although she's only two years in with dancing, Johnson has advice for any kid that wants to get into dancing.
Her secret: surround yourself with loved ones and those who support you. "It's rough in the beginning," she said. "I almost wanted to quit because I didn't know what I was doing. But I have support from my family, teachers, and dance instructors. I went from inexperienced to experienced and learned."
Stars on Maine's debut performance is open to all ages with free admission, 2 p.m. Saturday June 9 at the Fallon Theatre.