Local dancers show their stuff | NevadaAppeal.com

Local dancers show their stuff

Appeal Staff Report

Crosstumblers Gymnastics has a successful new endeavor with its first year performance dance troupe taking many awards throughout the region.

It recently competed in the Thunderstruck Dance Competition and Dance USA Regional Championships. The newly formed Leap of Faith Performance Team performed five routines this year with three solos and two group routines. All of the routines scored in the top 85 percent bringing home numerous trophies as well as judges choice awards.

After many years without a dance program at Crosstumblers, the Leap of Faith Performance Team was formed with the 14 members performing acrobatic dance routines throughout the Northern Nevada area. The team is mainly made up of the competitive gymnasts at Crosstumblers who have a desire to improve their gymnastics skills.

“Gymnastics is a high precision sport; however it is the performance aspect that makes it so entertaining to watch,” said coach Steffany Walker. “Young gymnasts often concentrate on the skills and forget the performance. Competitive dancing helps them to develop the desire to show off for the judges and audience.”

The group routines give the gymnasts a chance to work together. The older girls performed a routine to “Cats” which along with highlighting their individual tumbling skills allowed them to work together to do lifts and tosses that they don’t usually practice.

The younger dancers performed a jazz routine to “Every Beat of My Heart” in order to help them perfect their basic dance technique for their balance beam and floor exercise routines as well as learning how to perform.

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The youngest member of the Leap of Faith Team is 4 year old Jared Walker, who is just learning stage presence.

“He is very shy, but he gets to put on a costume and pretend to be a bear and suddenly he doesn’t mind being in front of people,” said Walker who is also his mom.

Jared’s older brother Ryan is also on the Performance Team and this season has qualified for two different national dance championships as well as qualifying for the finals of the Museum Idol competition with his character dance to “King of New York” from the Disney musical “Newsies.”

Also performing a solo dance routine was 14 year old Michelle McDonald who combined acrobatics with lyrical dance in a number to “Parade On.” McDonald also qualified to the national championships for both Thunderstruck and Dance USA.

Crosstumblers Gymnastics has recently moved to a larger facility at 3633 Research Way No. 104 on the north end of Carson City. Classes are ongoing throughout the summer with a week long summer camp being offered in July. For more information on any of the programs offered, call Walker, 883-5477 or check the website at http://www.crosstumblers.com.