My son has been dancing with Palmetto Dance Starz for about a year and a half. He's recently been expressing some interest in competing during next year's season. So, I thought it would be a good idea to go support our studio and take Miles to watch so he could see what competition was all about to make sure it was something he was interested in. We headed up to Dance Machine Myrtle Beach (AKA America's National Dance Championship) at Myrtle Beach High School.
I knew I'd want to snap some photos of our studio's dances, so I brought my camera. I really wasn't planning on taking a lot of photos, or taking any of dancers from other schools. I'm not an event photographer. While I absolutely love dance photography - I really figured what I loved was the combination of capturing fine art dance images outdoors. I didn't expect to be moved by what I saw on stage at Myrtle Beach High School. I was wrong. Turns out, it doesn't matter if the dancer is on the beach or on an old high school stage, I just love photographing dancers. Period.
Watching each dance is like watching a story unfold and escaping into that story for just a few moments - It is so inspiring and refreshing - and ....well.....as cheesy as it sounds, just moving. The years of hard work and dedication are insane. These dancers pour every piece of themselves into those three moments on stage. During one performance Sunday, I watched a dancer in a trio perform flawlessly. As soon as she stepped off stage, I caught a glimpse of her in the wings of the stage. She nearly hit the floor - and another girl had to help her limp backstage. I don't know what she'd done to herself on that stage because she never showed it. She pushed through - and performed as if she was perfectly fine.
Imagine what the world could be like if we all lived every day as if we were a dancer? Pushing through - performing our absolute best - no matter what. Giving every moment everything we had.
Below are some of my favorites from the day.
Palmetto Dance Starz all boys team: Rhythmic Kingz (high platinum and 1st overall)
Sierra Rector, Palmetto Dance Starz. High Platinum - 1st overall Teen Solo
Ireland Carroll, Palmetto Dance Starz. Platinum, 3rd overall Senior Solo.
At this point, I just became inspired and started taking photos of the dancers as they came onto stage. I was so inspired by these young ladies from Elite Dance Center in Fayetteville, NC; they were amazing! Huge thank you to Carrie Clark for helping me identify them!
Above is Nicole Burdett, and Haley View is below.
Above: Keriann Rodriguez, Nicole Burdett and Ally Jones from Elite Dance Center. Below Ally Jones.
Above: Keriann Rodriguez (Kate Reames is in the background) from Elite Dance Center.
This next group of ladies were from The Studio: Center for the Performing Arts, LLC. They were mesmerizing to watch. It was obvious they were really in synch with one another - they just flowed. They danced together a few times and each time it was magical.
Two of Palmetto Dance Starz' dancers got up for a duet. Jalin and Marisa nailed it! They stirred up the crowd and landed a Bravo Award, high platinum and 1st place overall for Teen Duet.
One of my favorite dances from the large group category was this creepy number called "Where Have all the Children Gone?" I have no idea which studio this was, if anyone knows - please comment to let me know and I will make sure to credit them too.
I was able to stay for one more of Palmetto Dance Starz dances, "Ladies Choice." This fun dance earned a platinum and 2nd place overall for teen large group.
All in all, it was a fabulous weekend. Even though I missed their performance, I still want to give a shout out to Palmetto Dance Starz small groups that performed Sunday evening. They won 1st, 2nd and 3rd overall in the Teen small group category and "Let Him Go" also won a Bravo Award.
Necessary Photography is a Myrtle Beach photographer who specializes in portraits including, fine art dance photography, senior portraits, family, maternity and engagement pictures. If you’re looking for a photographer to capture your senior or dance portraits, please give us a call.