|ROYAL VALE TO DO THE SALSA FOR ANNUAL HOLIDAY CONCERT|
MONTREAL, DECEMBER 12, 2007—Students from Royal Vale Elementary School (5851 Somerled) in N.D.G. have chosen a unique theme for their annual holiday concert - a presentation of salsa dancing. It will take place on Wed. Dec. 19 from 10:30 a.m. to noon in the main auditorium, with children from kindergarten to Grade 6 performing.
“I decided to have the children dance this year instead of sing,” says Grade 5 teacher Wendy Cryer-Frank, who is producing the program along with Spiritual Community Animator Michael Donkers. “We usually pick a type of folksong, and I play my guitar as an accompaniment from year to year. During the summer when I took my long walks I listened to good music such as salsa and meringue and I thoroughly enjoyed the selections. I would think of the dance steps and say to myself, ‘wouldn't it be nice to have the students dance to this type of music? I knew that this type of activity would not be in most of their repertoires, and it would bring some historical and cultural values into the mix."
Ms. Frank recognized that this might be a difficult task, until she remembered the movie "Mad Hot Ballroom", and said to herself, "if those Grade 4 and 5 students could do it, then so could we.” Mr. Donkers served as the dance instructor. “We began with a front and back step combination,” said Ms. Frank. “Then we moved to a second step, of a side to side pattern. The third combination was a side to side back step, and the final step was a one time turn.”
The program will begin with a short introduction to what salsa is all about.
Michael J. Cohen