Over 300 dancers from fourteen studios participated in the fifth annual Des Plaines Dance Idol Competition on Friday and Saturday, February 22 and 23, at Prairie Lakes Community Center. North Shore School of Dance in Highland Park, Mundelein Dance Company, Dance Connection of Grayslake, Xposure Dance Studio in Highland Park, Studio North Academy of the Performing Arts in Wilmette, The Itasca Park District, Aspiration Dance Company in Lombard, The Elmhurst Park District, Impact Dance Company in LaGrange, The Gurnee Park District, The Hoffman Estates Park District, The Streamwood Park District, The Wood Dale Park District, On Your Toes Academy of Dance in Buffalo Grove and Artistry in Motion, the in-house dance company of the Des Plaines Park District competed in solo; duo/trio; and small and large group categories.
Dancers were judged in each of four age divisions: 6-8, 9-11, 12-14 and 15-18; by industry professionals: Kendra Jorstad, original member of Chicago Tap Theatre and founder of jorsTAP Chicago; Marc Macaranas, founding member of DanceWorks Chicago and now presenting solo work as The Visitor; and Jessica Deahr of Chicago Dance Crash. A wide variety of dance styles and genre were represented including jazz, tap, ballet, modern, lyrical, musical theater, and hip-hop. Each dance performance was scored and presented with a First, Second, Third, or Merit Award based on points. An overall First, Second, and Third Place trophy was then awarded for the Highest Score in each age group.
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In the 6-8 age group, First Place went to Aspiration Dance Company for "Who's That Boy?" small group hip-hop; Second Place went to Hoffman Estates Park District for "T-R-O-U-B-L-E" small group jazz; and Third Place went to Artistry in Motion Dance Company for "I Won't Say I'm in Love," a musical theatre solo performed by Madison Rentner. In the 9-11 age group, First Place was awarded to Artistry in Motion Dance Company for "Will You Be There?" a lyrical solo performed by Jordin Suwalski; Second Place was awarded to On Your Toes Academy of Dance for "Breakaway," large group jazz; and Third Place was also awarded to On Your Toes Academy of Dance for "Final Flight," small group contemporary. In the 12-14 age group, First Place went to On Your Toes Academy of Dance for "In Honor Of," a contemporary solo performed by Calli Taitz; Second Place went to Artistry in Motion Dance Company for "Workin' Day and Night," large group hip-hop; and Third Place went to On Your Toes Academy of Dance for "What Really Matters," a contemporary duet performed by Calli Taitz and Jessica Taitz. In the 15-18 age group, First Place was awarded to On Your Toes Academy of Dance for "Getting There," a contemporary solo performed by Jessica Taitz; second Place was awarded to Artistry in Motion Dance Company for "Slow and Steady," a lyrical solo performed by Kim Diebold; and third Place was awarded to Dance Connection Spotlight Company for "Send Me to the Moon," a lyrical solo performed by Jamie Hansen.
"We congratulate all the dancers and participating studios at Dance Idol 2013. We believe that while competition is a necessary element of serious dance training, it is only one part of their overall education. We strive to expose young dancers to the artistry and beauty of all forms of dance and make dance a lifelong learning experience. We welcome all of these talented dancers back again next year," said Nancy Suwalski, Cultural Arts Supervisor for the Des Plaines Park District.
For more information about Artistry in Motion's Spring Showcase, visit www.DPParks.org or call 847-391-5711.