Murrieta Dance Project performs at Hemet High

MDP’s ‘M-azing 11’ and ‘Stars & Stripes Ballet’ sells out

Photo by Corey Evan / The Valley Chronicle
Dads take to the stage with daughters during Murrieta Dance Project’s ‘M-azing 11’ show last month.

■ Corey Evan / Reporter

Dancing is often a family affair, as was illustrated at Hemet High School’s Performing Arts Center June 16-17. There, the Murrieta Dance Project brought their ‘M-azing 11 and Stars & Stripes Ballet’ to the San Jacinto Valley, which opened to sold out crowds for both performances.
As the MDP celebrated its 11th year of dancing, a large venue was needed to show off their wide range of routines performed by every age group up to age 18. According to MDP jazz and tap instructor Orialis Ashley, the HHS theater just happened to fit everyone perfectly.
“We were just looking for new venues,” said Ashley. “Bret (Cherland) and all the guys and girls that he’s been teaching have been so amazing. The stage is great, the stage lighting is great, the faculty and the kids running the show have been awesome.”
On Friday, the kids took the audience through an assortment of routines set to a selection of American music favorites, as part of their “Stars and Stripes Ballet.” There was also a selection of jazz, hip hop and contemporary routines.
The Saturday afternoon matinee opened up with a “Ballroom Blitz,” before progressing through a selection of children’s favorites, including some routines set to Disney favorites. After intermission, the hip-hop scene took over and ran it… and “Roc’d the Mic,” too.
Saturday evening started out once again with a patriotic vibe, taking audiences through such favorites as “Yankee Doodle.” That said, the older kids managed to find room to ‘Twist and Shout’ and show off their rhythm, including tap and jazz along the way, to close out this year’s event.
All three shows included a daddy-daughter dance performance, which progressed from the youngest daughters to their high school seniors.
Ashley and all of her fellow instructors are plenty proud of these dancers’ hard work.
“This is their end-of-the-year showcase, to show everybody what they’ve been working on all year,” she said.
MDP would like to thank the MDP Booster Club and Strictly Workout Wear of Temecula for sponsoring this year’s show.
If you and your kids spend time around Murrieta this summer, why not make classes at MDP a part of your summer activities? If you like to dance, the MDP are having auditions July 25-27, and will have an Open House on Aug. 5 at 10 a.m., where food, entertainment and registration discounts will be plentiful. You can check out the MDP’s website at www.mdp.dance.

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