They may not be the cast of the Broadway musical, "A Chorus Line," but nearly a dozen Clayton County and Henry County children have been practicing their twirls, cartwheels and cha-cha moves this month, at the Clayton County Library System's headquarters branch, in anticipation of their big moment.
The youngsters have been rehearsing every Monday (with a special rehearsal being held tonight), in preparation for Saturday, when the lights shine, and the youths give an eight-minute recital for parents and other library patrons.
"I'm very much excited about the performance," said Morrow's Kiara Lee, 12, a long-time dancer rehearsing with the library group. "I'm always excited about getting up and performing in front of everyone. That's what makes it [dancing] fun."
The creative dance class participants will give their recital on Saturday, at 2 p.m., at the library branch located at 865 Battle Creek Road, in Jonesboro, according to Ivory Burrell, the class instructor. Burrell is a dancer, who also teaches dance moves with the Victory Dance group, which is a part of the Jonesboro-based New Covenant Fellowship Ministries.
This is the first time she has taught a class at the library, she said. Burrell, who frequently brings her children to the headquarters library branch, said she inquired about teaching the class after seeing other children's programs offered there.
"I work with children at our ministry," she said. "Children love to dance. It's another way of expression. It's an outlet ... It's [also] a builder of self-esteem. It causes them to have to interact with one another in a positive manner. And, they really get to express themselves, outside of just talking."
Burrell said that because the children only had this month to rehearse, they will perform only one routine. The dance will be set to the music of Christian singer, Israel Newbreed, she added. The instructor pointed out, however, that while the youths will only perform one routine, they will put a lot into that performance, since it will be eight minutes long.
On Monday, the youngsters repeatedly practiced moves that included twirls, flips, bows, cha-chas, cartwheels, arm-waving, and scarf-waving actions.
"It's been fun, and everybody's been working really hard to make this a success," said Stockbridge youth, Jacqualyn Alexander, 9. She added that this was the first time she has ever participated in a dance class. "I love to dance to music where I can feel the beat," she said.
Other youngsters participating in the class also said they have been enjoying themselves while learning the dance moves. Lily Brightwell, 7, of Jonesboro, said she likes "when we get to come out [at the beginning of the routine] with all of this energy."
Atlanta youngster, Zaria Trotter, 12, said the class has been a new experience for her, even though she's been taking dance classes for more than a year. "I'm not used to doing gospel dances," she said. "I'm used to doing hip-hop, and tap, and ballerina dances."
She said she's liked the new experience, however, because "it's an enjoyment. I get to hang out with my friends."