This year MIHS added a new dance choreography class, allowing students to express their love for different types of dance and creative movement.
Daniela Melgar designed and instructs this new course, seeing an opportunity to instill a love of dance and movement in her students.
Students do not need prior dance experience to enroll in Melgar’s course because it is also designed to honor a broad range of skill sets, including many students who have never taken a dance class before.
“In dance class, we move almost the entire time,” Melgar said. “Body awareness is important to everything that you do.” Given how many hours students spend sitting at desks every day, Melgar’s vision is also an antidote to the drudgery of the everyday grind.
The class offers something for every student’s dance interests. Class time focuses on learning many different types of dance: contemporary, jazz, ballroom, ballet and salsa.
“I really enjoy contemporary and lyrical; it’s more of an expressive style of dance,” said freshman Sofia Tubach, an experienced dancer.
In addition to learning dances choreographed by Melgar, students work in groups to create their own routines in different styles of dance throughout the year.
At the end of the year, students will put on a show and perform for friends, family and the community. The students will manage, produce, choreograph and perform the show by themselves.
“They’re doing all the work, including choreographing and performing pieces that they have created on their own,” Melgar said.
The dance choreography class is an outlet for student expression.
“It helps me express what I am feeling, and I love how free I feel when I dance,” freshman Priya Bhananker said.