Artistry in Motion, the in-house dance company of the Des Plaines Park District, took home record top honors at DanceAmerica 2014, February 21 and 22, at the Paramount Theatre in Aurora. The Company dancers earned twenty four First Place, six Second Place, six Third Place, one Fourth Place, two Fifth Place, and two Merit Awards. Dancers from seventeen studios in Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, and Wisconsin competed in 287 routines. All forty-one Artistry in Motion performances qualified for the DanceAmerica 2014 Grand National Finals scheduled for July 3-6 in Lake Buena Vista, Florida.
In the Primary/Junior division, The Light, a duet performed by Sammy Kedziora and Jordin Suwalski, choreographed by Cecilia Ferguson-Bell, was awarded the Overall High Score in the Duo/Trio category, as well as the Overall High Score in the entire Primary/Junior division (Duet-Mega Production.) The Company production, Youth, choreographed by Jamie Salas, also won the Overall High Score in the Mega-Production category.
Other high scores include: Suwalski's solo, Thriller, choreographed by Ferguson-Bell: first runner up female solo; Habanera, choreographed by Salas and performed by Kim Fairhead, Rose Kurutz, and Suwalski: first runner up in the duo/trio category; Ole, choreographed by Ferguson-Bell and performed by Ashlinn DeMonte, Kiley White, Olivia Bitcon, Anna Wozniakowski, Hailey Suwalski, Suzy Linek, Madison Rentner, Cailyn Harrington, Rory Lally, and Makayla Allen: first runner-up Large Group category; and At the Speedway, a Company production choreographed by Laura Chiuve: first runner-up Mega-Production. Nitty Gritty, choreographed by Chiuve and performed by Lauren Roskoske, DeMonte, and White, received the Best Precision Specialty Award, and was the second runner up in the duo/trio category. Rhythm of Life, choreographed by Mary Williams and performed by J. Suwalski, Fairhead, Kurutz, Rentner, Linek, Lyris Daker, and Tess Wastyn was the second runner-up in the small group category and received a special Best Choreography award. Student choreographer, Bridget Donovan's Crazy in Love, performed by Jackie Chiakas, Natalie Sanchez, Greta Sorensen, Ella Kurutz, R. Kurutz, J. Suwalski, Fairhead, Daker, Wastyn, and Kedziora was the second runner-up in the large group category.
In the Intermediate/Senior Division, Girl with the Red Balloon, choreographed by Chiuve and performed by Kedziora, E. Kurutz, Donovan, Sanchez, Sorensen, Jackie Rentner, and Jessie Starzynski was awarded the Overall High Score for a Small Group piece. Balloon also received a Special Award for Best Choreography.
The Overall Teacher's Choice Award went to Cellophane, choreographed by Karlo Familara and Angelina Grima, and performed by J. Rentner, Donovan, Starzynski, E. Kurutz, Sanchez, Kedziora, Fairhead, and J. Suwalski.
Fifteen soloists qualified for the Dancer of the Year Semi-finals including in the Petite Age Group: J. Suwalski, R. Kurutz, Wozniakowski, M. Rentner, DeMonte; in the Teen Age Group: Fairhead, Kedziora, Daker, Sorensen, E. Kurutz, and Emily Sprague; and in the Senior Age Group: Donovan, Starzynski, Sanchez, and Mathew Skorupski.
"In preparation for this event, our dancers have concentrated on refining their technique and emotional execution. Through hours of practice, they have learned to connect to their music and they have performed like young professionals. We are so thankful to their parents for believing in the vision of the company. We could not be more proud of their achievements," said Chiuve.
Artistry in Motion will perform in their annual Spring Dance Showcase on April 11 and 12 at the Prairie Lakes Theater. Tickets go on sale March 19 at the Leisure Center. For more information call 847-391-5700 or visit www.DPParks.org.