King expresses personality through dance

Freshman+Lydia+King+leaps+during+the+Valley+Dance+Showcase.

Bob Adamek

Freshman Lydia King leaps during the Valley Dance Showcase.

Evelyn Lewis, Staff Reporter

Expressing yourself through dance is a way to engage and communicate your piece to your audience. To freshman Lydia King, expression plays a major role in her dancing. 

“[Expression] helps [to] tell [a] story and share the message that you’re trying to convey. I personally wouldn’t want to watch a piece that is dull and expressionless. [Expression] makes dance come alive,” King said.

As an extracurricular, King dances at Dance and Company, practicing ballet, jazz, and modern. In school, she participates in dance classes as well. At the Valley Dance Showcase, on May 5, King performed in ‘Disco Inferno’, ‘Insidious’, junior Ellie Velker’s honors piece and senior Mollie Moomaw’s honors piece. 

“[I enjoyed] dancing [in] Molly’s [piece] because the crowd’s reaction was really fun. It was such a powerful piece and [we] worked really hard on it, it was just really rewarding,” King said.

King has been dancing since she saw the nutcracker in elementary school.  She enjoys all the rehearsals and classes leading up to a show and the most rewarding part is performing. 

“I think just the atmosphere of all the dancers at [performances] and the energy that they bring when performing together. It’s just a lot of fun, “ King said.

When dancing, expression is what changes a dance from people going through motions to truly dancing a piece. King finds it the most important aspect of a performance. 

“We work hard in rehearsals [and] we work hard learning all the pieces but if we don’t perform using expressions the piece won’t fully come alive. Expression really helps to tell the story and share the message that you’re trying to convey. I try to make my movements match with the music [and] tell it through my eyes,” King said.

Through COVID-19, dancers struggled to be able to express themselves with masks and performance restrictions. 

“I think that it was harder to have facial expressions and it forced you to really use your body language more. I tried to use my eyes, eyebrows, and body language more. There was really no other way,” King said.

When performing in honor pieces’ King has the chance to dance without a mask. In all previous performances this year, she had to wear a mask and for group pieces as well.  

“[Dancing] felt really different because I haven’t done it in two years, but it felt good to be able to express myself more,” King said. “I think dancing without [the mask] really allows you to have that expression and the audience definitely enjoyed it.”