Dancers from Belmont secondary including Caitlyn Cote (right) Ashley Griffiths

Do a little dance in Langford

Belmont dancers thrive in school’s new 300-seat theatre

When she is stressed out, Ashley Griffiths likes to dance.

The Grade 10 Belmont secondary student said she and more than 80 students bared their souls while wearing their dancing shoes at a recent recital in the school’s newly minted theatre.

“When you are dancing you kind of just block out everything and you just think about yourself and what you are doing as you’re dancing,” she says. “So you don’t really focus on anything else, (just) your body and your moves and how you’re feeling at that moment.”

With exams coming and the stresses of being a high school student rising, 15-year-old former Spencer middle schooler turns to the dance.

“Some people read, some people take a break, but for me when I dance it kind of relaxes me. It helps me out … and I don’t have to worry about other things,” she says. “But you definitely have to prepare yourself physically. You have to be ready emotionally for when you go on stage … (But) it doesn’t matter what other people think, it only matters how you feel.”

Four classes danced three numbers each in what Griffiths called a celebration of dance in the school’s 300-seat theatre at last Saturday’s recital.

Instructor Lesley Conway, who returned to lead her fifth year of dance at the school, says being part of that program is a big commitment for students. But everyone involved, from those who dance every day to those new to dancing, have been working hard.

“Dance is one way that really helps students (see) that there is another part of life you can do just because you enjoy it,” says Conway. “Especially in school, a lot of school is math and science and they can come to dance and express themselves with movement.”

The class has been popular, prompting the addition of an extra block next semester. Not only that, it has provided students with a positive environment, promotes the arts, healthy living, being active and having a positive self image says Conway.

“I have seen a huge improvement in most of the dancers in the program.” She says her students worked hard to prepare for the recent show and really focused their efforts this month.

Just Posted

Swastikas appear on downtown Victoria bus shelters

VicPD says graffiti has increased significantly in last six months

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau will be in Victoria on Thursday

Trudeau is speaking at a campaign countdown event in downtown Victoria

Best of West Shore wants to hear from you

Rick Stiebel/News Staff You could be in line for a great prize… Continue reading

Rickter Scale: The chicken’s ready when pigs fly

The Rickter Scale is a weekly column

VIDEO: Sparrows raise their chicks in Cadboro Bay deck planter

Jill Yoneda captured 11 days up close with tiny Junco sparrows

Greater Victoria wanted list for the week of July 16

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Gas price inquiry questions Trans Mountain capacity, company denies collusion

The first of up to four days of oral hearings in the inquiry continue in Vancouver

‘Benzos’ and fentanyl a deadly cocktail causing a growing concern on B.C. streets

Overdoses caused by benzodiazepines can’t be reversed with opioid-overdose antidote naloxone

Chinook retention begins on North Island, but amid new size limit

DFO calls measures ‘difficult but necessary’ following rockslide on Fraser River

Will you be celebrating national hotdog day with any of these crazy flavours?

The popularity of hotdogs spans generations, cultures

Former home of accused Penticton shooter vandalized

Ex-wife of man who is accused of murdering four people had her house vandalized

Survivor of near-drowning in B.C. lake viewing life through new eyes

“If I died that day, the baby wouldn’t know his dad,” said 31-year-old Mariano Santander-Melo.

‘Beyond the call’: Teen in police custody gets birthday surprise by B.C. Mountie

Unusual celebration started when Staff Sgt. Paul Vadik went to visit the teen in his Coquitlam cell

Most Read