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  • Writer's pictureMaples Academy of Dance

Dancing Through Covid-19…And Past It

Updated: Jun 30, 2021

Dancing Through Covid

When Covid hit Canada in 2020, dancers had their year abruptly cut short. Dance communities worldwide waited anxiously through the summer to see what would happen to their beloved world of dance.

In Manitoba, it was no different. Studio owners rallied together to determine best practices to apply in their studios to keep their dancers safe. Facility and class capacities were adjusted, lobbies and parent viewing areas were closed, class schedules were staggered, and teachers learned to quickly adjust their classes, choreography, and teaching methods to accommodate proper physical distancing, mask wearing, and of course, teaching virtually. Sadly, some studios closed, and those who remained open, didn’t do so easily.

Winnipeg dancer in their dance studio dancing past covid pandemic

While there were days everyone wanted to give up, at Maples Academy of Dance, we didn’t. We persevered, stayed positive, and found ways to dance safely through Covid-19. As a result, our dancers were able to participate in in-person dance classes for more than half their year. During the 4-month-long government mandated shutdown, our dancers were able to continue dancing from home with a well-organized virtual program. Because of this, the superstars at Maples Academy of Dance have pirouetted away from the 2020-2021 dance season with a lot to be proud of:

- Our dancers completed their syllabus training in all classes.

- Our dancers created a virtual Zoom holiday performance.

- Our dancers performed beautifully in their year-end virtual recital, SHINE 2021.

- Our dancers have photos to commemorate their year.

- Our competitive team made it back to the competition stage (virtually), earning exceptional marks, judges choice awards, choreography awards, top score awards, and scholarships while competing against dancers from across Canada.

Most importantly, our dancers have a sense of completion. In a year full of so much uncertainty, they did it. In a year where it was easy to hide, disconnect, and give up, Maples Academy of Dance dancers, completed the dance season. In turn, they also:

- Gained a sense of pride, purpose, and community.

- Maintained strong physical and mental health.

- Created valuable connections with their peers.

- Benefitted from positive teacher-student mentorship.

- Gained confidence.

Competitive dancer in her winnipeg dance studio jumps for joy

On top of it all, dance gave our dancers something they could take part in, every week, that took away the stress of the pandemic and replaced it with joy, fun, and a sense of accomplishment.

Dancing Past Covid

Moving ahead to life after the pandemic, the world is still waiting to see what that life will actually look like. It’s not a race to get there. We want it done right, for the long term. Still, a brighter future is in sight.

For dancers, there is the optimism that they’ll be able to return to the stage again for in-person performances and competitions. There is excitement to return to the classes they love. There is encouragement in knowing it can be done safely by following Dance Safe protocols that are already in place. And there is freedom for all dancers in knowing that they have the strength to do it. Afterall, they already did during some of the toughest days of the pandemic!

As we take a short break through the summer and prepare for our 2021-22 dance season, we continue to follow all public health measures to ensure our facility is in compliance with health regulations and equipped in a way to safely offer the programs our dancers know and love.

While 2020-2021 may have been a battle none of us were prepared for, it has strengthened us, connected us, and made us all better dancers for it. And while we can’t guarantee Covid will disappear any time soon, it is a 100% guarantee that the love of dance never dies and a passionate dancer can withstand anything. Looking forward to more wonderful days of dancing together. *Thank you to all the dancers, dancer parents, teachers, extended dance families and supporters who never gave up. You are all superstars!*


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