Among the countless courses offered to Medfield High School students, one of the newest and newly popular is the ballroom dance class, run by Karen Renaud. Being a dancer herself, Ms. Renaud puts in an incredible amount of time and effort into her classes, making sure the students enjoy their time just as much as she does.
Recently, Ms. Renaud set up an in-school field trip for her students to experience learning choreography from a choreographer she has known for years herself. Mr. Randy Deats, the owner of Dancin’ Feelin’ in Rhode Island, is an experienced professional ballroom dancer himself, as well as a teacher, coach, mentor, judge, and trainer. Aside from his countless roles as a dancer, Randy has also worked with the ballroom dance teams at the University of Rhode Island and Holy Cross.
Ms. Renaud discovered Deats through research, when looking for someone to help her with her ballroom dancing skills. Now that the MHS ballroom dance program has expanded so much, a Boosters grant was awarded, which made it possible for Deats to come and teach the classes choreography for their show.
From this experience, Ms. Renaud hopes to have her students take away choreography for the showcase at the end of the semester, as well as a new perspective on the program itself. “I hope he can allow them to take away the same things I was able to by taking class from him. The leaders can finally take away a new point of view, and the students all together may learn new tips and tricks,” said Renaud. Although it is only one day that the students will spend with Deats, Ms. Renaud knows that it will benefit the students.
Despite the hard work put into organizing the field trip, it was overall a success according to many of the students who participated in the event. Bethany Komine , a senior in the ballroom dance class, said, “I thought it was helpful to have a professional and more experienced dancer come in and teach us things that we wouldn’t have been able to learn on our own, and he was really enthusiastic and willing to help us learn. It has definitely gotten people more excited about the performance we will be having because we now know more about the dances we are doing, and it feels a lot more stable and comfortable.”
Overall, the opportunity to learn from such a significant role model was an opportunity Ms. Renaud thinks MHS students were lucky to be given. Whether it be a sassy tango or uplifting swing, the ballroom students and Ms. Renaud are hopeful that Deats’ assistance will be effective on the classes. The ballroom dance class has continued practicing choreography, and is going strong with the tips and tricks they were given by Randy Deats. With the showcase coming up in December, the program is looking hopeful in being successful this semester!
By Nicole Downing
This article was written by Nicole Downing, a Medfield High School student and member of the student newspaper, The Kingsbury Chronicle. The piece is part of Medfield Patch's weekly series, "Warrior Weekly," helping provide information about MHS to the local community.