Top Hat II Dance Studio offers ‘Don’t Stop Dancing’ in Orono

Posted June 01, 2011, at 9:59 p.m.

ORONO, Maine — Top Hat II Dance Studio will present “Don’t Stop Dancing,” the studio’s 25th spring show, at 6 p.m. Saturday, June 11, at Collins Center for the Arts, University of Maine. Dancers from preschool through adult will perform.

Tickets are $14, $7 for children and students. For information, contact the studio at 989-3900 or tophatii@aol.com.

The Top Hat II Dance Team from Holden participated March 18-19 in the dancers inc. competition in North Berwick, bringing home two High Gold awards, an Elite, a Teen Rising Star high score, three special awards and free entry for one routine at the national competition in July in Hershey, Pa.

Advanced tappers Kara Day, Krysti Sanzaro and Nicky Wheeler performed “Fancy Footwork” in the Senior Allstar Duo-Trio division, earning a High Gold and the “Fan-TAP-ulous” special award for difficult steps and synchronized tapping. The trio received the second-highest score in Senior Allstar Duo-Trio and qualified for the national competition in July.

All 49 dancers performed in “Dance,” an energetic entry in the Production category with partner steps, moving formations and cheerleader-style lifts, earning a High Gold award.

The tap team of 15 dancers entered “Sticks and Clicks” in the Teen division, an a cappella routine combining syncopated tap rhythms with beats provided by drumsticks the dancers used throughout the dance. With no music to “rein them in” as nerves kick in and adrenaline flows, it’s easy to lose the timing and get carried away with the ever-increasing speed. Thus an a cappella routine requires total concentration as all 15 dancers work to sound like one person tapping with very loud taps.

Judges gave the tap team several honors — an Elite Gold, the highest award at dancers inc.; High Score in the Rising Star Teen division, a special award for “Super Sick Syncopation” and the Encore award, with free entry at the national competition, which usually costs $585.

The Top Hat II Tap Team is in the process of raising funds to allow the team to travel to Hershey, Pa., to compete at the national level.

Because the purpose is performing rather than competing, the dancers attend just one competition a year. Though they have qualified for nationals for several years, they have never taken their routines to the national stage.

According to Top Hat II director Sandy Sanzaro, now seems to be the time: “They are a great bunch of kids who love to perform. The Tap Team’s Elite is a first for the studio, and the Senior Duo-Trio’s High Gold is the highest score our dancers have received at the advanced level. If there is ever a time to take the plunge and try Nationals, everything points to this being the year.”

Twenty-two members of the Top Hat II Dance Team took part in the recent Disney Dancin’ workshop at Disney World in Florida, and performed at Downtown Disney.

Team members who performed at the dancers inc. competition were:

• Senior Team: Kassie Foss, Elaine Gray, Molly Horne, Jenna Morrill, Catherine Nichols, Krysti Sanzaro, Nicky Wheeler, Sarah Boss, Kara Day, Laine Ferrill, Kelly Hiller, Hillary Seekins, Olivia

Barberi, Molly Chapman, Isabella Eastman, Kelsey Gifford, Ashton Ortiz, Chelsea Richards, Dayna White, Leah Boucher, Sarah Burby, Micaela Gendreau, Rachel Gower, Mikala Jordan, Emma Nichols, Taylor Staples, Kaitlyn Robinson.

• Junior Team: Jamie Cunningham, Tori Cushing, Olivia Doucette, Bryanna Dumond, Abby Elkins, Lauren Fogg, Emily Fraser-Read, Kelsey Gilmore, Mary Murphy, MacKenzie Nixon, Caitlin O’Kendley, Julia Andrew, Marie Andrew, Castine Barry Grant, Madison Bean, Courtney Carroll, Michele Maybury, Haley Reynolds, Emily Colter, Maddy Elkins, Samantha McIntyre, Ashlee Vilasuso.

The dancers are from Holden, Eddington, Brewer, Hampden, Winterport, Frankfort, Carmel, Hermon, Glenburn and Kenduskeag.

For information on Top Hat II Team performances, or to make a donation to the team, contact the studio at tophatii@aol.com or 989-3900.

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