Dance academy to hold annual showcase at MontBleu Theatre
If you go
What: Academy of Dance Arts: A Spring Celebration
When: 6 p.m. Friday and Saturday, May 17-18
Where: MontBleu Resort Casino & Spa Theatre
Tickets: $20 plus taxes and fees
MontBleu Theatre will spring to life with arabesques, pliés and pirouettes this weekend, when the Academy of Dance Arts holds its annual dance performance.
“It’s going to be a culmination of our year, of what the kids have been learning,” said Kelly O’Fallon, owner and director of the academy. “I want the show to reflect what they’ve worked on throughout the year, how much they’ve grown technically.”
For O’Fallon, the Academy of Dance Arts represents the culmination of a lifetime of dancing. Born in Knoxville, Tenn. O’Fallon started dancing at the age of five. A soloist with the Knoxville Ballet Company during high school, she attended the University of Tennessee on a choreographer’s scholarship after graduating.
She went on to pursue a 14-year professional dancing career that spanned countless appearances, including “Days of Our Lives” and “The 1988 Bob Hope Olympic Special.” She has danced commercially on behalf of Taco Bell, IBM International and many other companies.
Upon moving from Los Angeles to the Lake Tahoe Basin in 1994, O’Fallon opened the Academy of Dance Arts, with locations in South Lake Tahoe and Gardnerville, Nev. She wanted to transition from professional dancing to choreography and instruction, she said.
“All I’ve ever done is dance,” O’Fallon said. “I wanted to share my knowledge and all the experience I’ve had in the entertainment world with kids and train them.”
Now in its 19th year, the Academy of Dance Arts provides dance instruction to more than 170 students, from toddlers to those in their mid-20s. The organization offers around 60 classes a week, O’Fallon said.
“We have a really strong ballet program, so for us the foundation is ballet,” O’Fallon said. “Our shows reflect a lot of what the kids learned throughout the year and ballet is always at the forefront.”
The academy will hold its yearly showcase performance this weekend, on Friday and Saturday. Titled “A Spring Celebration”, this year’s production will include a ballet performance set to tunes from popular films like “The Breakfast Club” and “Tangled.”
“All the songs are taken from movies,” O’Fallon said. “It’s a little more jazzy and contemporary as opposed to really traditional classical ballet like it was last year.”
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