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West // West Oahu News
Christina O’Connor

Aiea High Dancers Showcase Ballet, Modern Dance In Concerts

Members of the Aiea Repertory Dance Company (from left) Paul Delos Reyes, Elizabeth Savage, Alayna Cantillo and Nicholas Hyde. Photo from Desiree Cremer.

When Desiree Cremer took over Aiea High School’s dance program in 2005, she was teaching classes in the cafeteria.

In the years since, the school has beefed up the program and built a studio, complete with mirrors and ballet barres. Under Cremer’s direction, the students receive formal training in ballet, modern dance and tap.

The school also has established its own Aiea Repertory Dance Company, which will showcase its talents during a series of three shows for the Spring Dance Concert 2013.

Audiences have two more chances to catch the performance – at 6 p.m. this Saturday at the H1 Dance Studio at Aiea High School and 4 p.m. Sunday at H1 Dance Studio at the Pearl City Cultural Center.

Cremer, who has a master’s degree in dance in higher education from New York University, formerly ran her own dance school in South Africa. When she came to Aiea High, she wanted to provide the foundation necessary for students to further their studies in dance, or even pursue a related career.

“I saw a need at Aiea High School because so many of the students here cannot afford to study ballet or modern dance,” she explained. “And these students just took to dance.”

Since she’s been running the program, a few of her graduates have attended summer dance programs on the Mainland. Recently, four students were accepted to study in University of Hawaii dance department.

“You don’t have to be a performer, per say. There are so many things you can do with dance,” Cremer said. “Besides teaching and choreographing, you could get into the medical field with physical therapy, or body conditioning, or be a personal trainer.”

The Aiea Repertory Dance Company is comprised of the best dancers from the school’s classes

-all of whom have been handpicked for their superior abilities. The group has been rehearsing after school for the show since February, and Cremer is excited to finally have her students take the stage.

“I am very, very proud of them,” Cremer said. “These kids are wonderful.”

Tickets cost $8 for adults and $5 for children and students. For more information or to order tickets, call Cremer at 483-7300, ext. 368, or visit aieahighdanceprogram.com.

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