This article is part of the CCA Previews for 2016.
by Chua Bing Hong (16S06B), Chairperson; Grace Lee (16A01E), Vice-Chairperson; Gwendolyn Oh (16A13A), Secretary; Charm Nyi Han (16S06I), Welfare; Zhuo Yun Shan (16S06F), Treasurer
6.5 hours a week, countless sessions a year. What is it that brings Street Dance together? Why do we do what we do? The reason is simple – we love dance. Every Monday and Wednesday, we not only dance our hearts out, but do so with a family of friends. Our lessons are with our instructor, Ms Stefanie Leong, whom we call Steffi. To us, she is more than a teacher – she is a friend who helps us to become better dancers, better people.
Every week, we make it a point to clean the studios so that our dancing environment remains healthy and clean. The afternoon starts with warm-ups and stretches, where it’s always funny to watch the boys attempt splits. Some days, Physical Training is also thrown in for core and strength conditioning. We then drill basic moves or refresh recent choreographies that we’ve learnt for upcoming events. When events are nearing, we usually spend more time on cleaning our choreography and building up chemistry among the dancers. In recent years, we have expanded the genres of dance from urban hip-hop to lyrical dance, old school hip-hop, contemporary dance, and even house!
We are involved in a number of events annually, namely school performances such as National Day and Teacher’s Day. To round up the year for the graduating batches, we also have a showcase or concert that varies from batch to batch (that you can read about here). Internally, these events help us give back to the school community. Recently, we have also participated in an island-wide dance competition, Super 24 (you can watch this year’s performance here). The aim was not to win, but to expose ourselves to the Singaporean dance scene where we learned how big the dance world actually is. Being passionate and avid dancers, we also often engage in activities outside of CCA time. We go for open dance classes together, share choreographies with one another, and some of us often freestyle and battle one another. Whenever you visit the mirrors, you’ll be sure to see some of us just having fun dancing!
Dance, to all of us, is something very emotional. During training sessions, dancers honestly feel a wide spectrum of different things, with each practice offering a completely different experience. Most of the time, the studio is transformed by the chemistry of the dancers, as we feel each other through the dance and dance as one crew. To us, dance is a form of escape – taking our minds off the troubles of the day and helping to refocus our energies. On bad days, however, mistakes do happen and there are times when we end up exhausted and drained. Nevertheless, at the end of the day, our instructor and teachers are always there for us, and so are we in supporting each other. It is through the good and bad that we truly grow as dancers, as individuals and as a family.
With a mix of members from from different dance backgrounds, some completely new altogether, you’d expect there to be segregations in our CCA. We did indeed start out on different levels, but through the various shared experiences – from simple dinners to competitions and performances – we have worked our way to becoming a united team today.
What Street has taught us is that dance is not the be all and end all. Dance is about the important values of friendship, humility, acceptance, willingness to learn, and the determination and perseverance that is integral in life. Ultimately RSD is not just a CCA, it’s a family of dancers.
This is the life of a Streeter. If you feel this is what you want, see you at our auditions and come join our family! :)