Leap into end of year dance showcases with Sofia Rivera

READY, SET, DANCE. Sofia Rivera is dancing in her repertoire show. She has never performed in an repertoire show before but was excited for the chance to. (Submitted by Sofia Rivera)
READY, SET, DANCE. Sofia Rivera is dancing in her repertoire show. She has never performed in an repertoire show before but was excited for the chance to. (Submitted by Sofia Rivera)

Hi my name is Peter Lipinsky and welcome to the podcast. This episode, I am going to be talking with Sofia Rivera, a freshman, about her upcoming repertoire show. Sofia has been dancing for over a decade. She practices and performs many different styles of dance.

Peter: My first question is just like, when did you get into dancing?

Sofia: Yeah, I mean, I’ve been dancing since I was two years old. So it’s been 12 years at this point, which is kind of crazy. I don’t know I have to have been doing it for a really long time. Every couple years, they add on new styles. So I feel like as I get older, I just get better and better. It’s like, it’s exposed to a lot more different techniques.

Peter: New styles is that like, new styles with dancing or like different dances.

Sofia: I mean, we learned different dances, like almost every class or every year, that just was always changing. But I mean, like new styles. So like, I did tap and ballet when I was young. And then they added on jazz, and then modern, and then hip hop, and then all of that kind of stuff. So that’s really cool.

Peter: And then when is your upcoming repertoire show?

Sofia: yeah. My repertoire show is Friday, Saturday, Sunday, this May 10 11th. And 12th.

Peter: Are you nervous at all for it? Or?

Sofia: I mean, yeah, I feel like you always get a little bit of nerves. But honestly, I’m just so excited. Because this is a show that like, we’ve never, we’ve never done this kind of thing before. So I’m really, really excited. I feel like I just get to hang out with my friends and do what I love. So I think it’s just gonna be really fun.

Peter: And like, what’s the difference between the repertoire show and like your normal performances?

Sofia: Yeah. I mean, our other performances, we have an end of the year recital, so that’s like, all of the kids. So like the two year olds to like the seniors, and they all have their own dances within their level. And then we have, like performance in Chicago, we do some dances and stuff like that. But they’re always choreographed by like, very similar people. So the repertoire show is really, really interesting, because they brought in, I think, like seven or like, nine guest choreographers, some of them even went to school at our dance studio. So it’s just like, really fun, you get exposed to so many different styles of dance. Like, it’s just really, it’s just an incredible opportunity, because you learn so, so much.

Peter: And does like having more of the was it choreographers? Does that add like any, like anxiety for you having like, different ones for each dance?

Sofia: I mean, for sure. Because like, if I get a choreographer that isn’t really my style, it can be a little bit more difficult for me to be able to pick up the movement as easily. But I feel like whoever it is, it just ends up being a learning experience. And I feel like that’s what we’re all in it for. So I feel like I mean, it does make me nervous, but it’s also just skyrocketing excitement, because it’s just so new. And I feel like new can just be the most fun thing.

Peter: Yeah. And how would you like, like, approach the obstacle of having like a choreographer that has like a different style?

Sofia: I mean, I would just really try to keep an open mind. I mean, I know that I definitely have my style, like I do modern it is the thing that I’m best at because I love it so much. And like I’ve done my own choreography too. So I think I really have my ideas set in stone, for things, just a really cool chance for me to just be open minded. Because I mean, if you’re open minded, everything will come together. Like they’re not gonna give you like a really bad piece. I mean, whatever you do, it will come together. And I feel like just having trust in that will really make it all okay.

Peter: Throughout the years, where would you have like ranked your passion for dancing, like compared to your other passions?

Sofia: Oh, yeah, for sure. I mean, as you get older, the hours get more and more demanding. So I do like 15 hours a week currently. So yeah, but I feel like when I was younger, and I only did like, maybe one or two hours a week, it just felt a lot more just like another side hobby. And I mean, I do a lot of different things. But I feel like as it’s taken up more of my time, it’s just become become one of my biggest passions at this point. I just feel like it’s a key part in describing myself.

I just feel like [dance is] a key part in describing myself

— Sofia Rivera

Like if someone were to say, like, what do you like to do when like, who are you? I would definitely say that dance has really influenced the majority of my life, therefore it really deserves a spot there. But so yeah, I feel like when I was younger, I sometimes I didn’t even like it right, because ballet felt very restricting, and tap was just really hard. And jazz was just all the stuff that I didn’t really want to do, but I As I got older, it just became this place of freedom, honestly. And I mean, it got to me, I’ve been with some of my best friends. Because now ballet, like the restriction that it used to have, it never has now, because there’s so much within it. And I feel like as you get older, it’s just what you learn. So I feel like now I just I love it more than I ever have.

Peter: And then, after your repertoire show, do you have like anything afterwards more shows? Or?

Sofia: I have my end of year show, which is like, June like 9th 10th 11th. It’s just kind of when school gets out. So that’s one we worked on those dances the entire year. So it’s like, I’ll be doing a tap number of jazz number, a ballet number tap number. And I think that we’re gonna be including some of these repertoire pieces in that show. And that one’s a fun one. I mean, it’s just tradition, at the end of the year, it’s really fun to get to see like the really young kids dance. I don’t know, I just think it’s very much a full circle moment whenever we get to the end of the year.

Peter: And is this like, a show you look forward to for like, the entire year?

Sofia: Yeah, 100%, I definitely think that it kicks into gear like after winter break. So around January is when I realized that it’s really coming. But I think that it is just one of the most fun because we get to work on it for so long. So it’s like, you just get to see these pieces. They’re very complex, and like, very intricate, which I think is really fun. And at first, it seems like a very daunting task to be a part of is like really difficult pieces. But by the end, you’re like, ‘Wow, that was so easy.’ And you get to see just how it builds. So I think having that amount of time is just so much fun. And it just makes it a lot better. Because in the repertoire, we only had three or four hours with our choreographer to learn the full piece, which was, I think, very difficult compared to this. But I think that both of those kinds of things have their beauties and their difficulties.

Peter: Yeah. And then when, if you think, do you ever think about like, when you’re going to be the senior, and you’re gonna have freshmen looking up to you at your level?

Sofia: Yes, I 100% do that is definitely something that me and my other freshman friends have been looking forward to for so long. We’re very much excited to be like the seniors of the group, because then everyone gets to look up to us, and we really get to help others. Like, I cannot wait to make other younger kids feel how my older friends make me feel right now. I feel like it’ll just be such an amazing opportunity. So I definitely definitely look forward to that. And I mean, it’s coming soon, but yeah.

Peter: Do you have any like ideas where you’re going to do like after like being a senior and stuff?

Sofia: I mean, yeah, I have a lot of different interests. Currently. Like I said, I love to write. I also love to do science and I love language. I love a lot of different things. But dance will always remain a part of my life. Whether I’m majoring or minor in it, I will definitely always like dance in the company. So I don’t know necessarily how it’s gonna fit into my life. But I know for sure that well, because I don’t I can’t really see myself abandoning something I love so much..

Thank you for joining us today Sofia and teaching us what dance has and will mean to you now and for your entire life. A big thank you to everyone who tuned in to this episode.

Music from Pixabay: Once In Paris (pumpupthemind)

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