Dancer drives for perfection in 2011

Shannon Cron, photographer

With 2011 just around the corner, thoughts of fresh beginnings and New Year’s resolutions fill the minds of students. Sophomore Kiley Peterson enters the new year with an intensely driven attitude, in hopes of improving her dance technique.

A dancer of 12 years, Peterson’s overall goal consists of two parts: winning the platinum award with her team at the Legacy Dance Competition in April and entering her contemporary ballet duet in the competition as well. “We compete in three different areas: toe, tap, and jazz,” said Peterson.

The idea of a contemporary ballet duet first came to Peterson back in August and since then she has been working on the dance ever since. “I was listening to the song “Remember” by Dommin, and I really liked it, so I started listening to it over and over, and eventually I just started adding dance steps to it,” said Peterson.

Synchronization along the dancers proves to be essential to the success of the team in the competition. “It’s all really about the balance of the dancers,” said Peterson. “I think dancing in a group or duet is so much harder than doing a solo, just because of the difficulty of finding the balance and dancing in harmony.”

Peterson believes the best way to reach this challenging goal is to abide by the saying, practice makes perfect. “Practicing with my class is essential,” said Peterson, “It’s then when you really get the class dynamic down and are able to attune to the class and what we need to work on as a whole.” In addition to class practice time, Peterson practices on her own for 45 minutes each day.

Peterson says her dancing has improved immensely throughout the years, and although she is proud of her progress, total satisfaction hasn’t yet been reached. “I’m a big believer in the philosophy that nothing is ever perfect,” said Peterson, “so even if I’ve improved a lot there are always things that I can do better.”

Despite the intensity of Peterson’s goal, she hopes these awards can be a part of her 2011 year. “I think it would be a really big accomplishment if we could win at Legacy,” said Peterson. “If all that hard work paid off, I would be so happy––actually, I would probably be freaking out.”