International Dance Day: Dance clubs reflect on various styles


Photo provided by Cindy Wu

The K-Pop Hip Hop Dance Club performs at Chantilly’s Got Talent on February 22, 2021

Shreeja Tangutur, Academics Editor

In 1982, the Dance Committee of International Theatre Institute (ITI) created International Dance Day to honor Jean-Georges Noverre, the creator of modern ballet, according to International-Dance-Day. Celebrated on April 29, the goal of the day is to bring people together through dance. The purpose of this celebration is to honor different styles of dance from a variety of origins. 

The school offers many dance clubs such as the dance team, the Chantilly Bhangra and the K-Pop Hip Hop Dance Club.

The school dance team focuses on pom, jazz and lyrical styles of dance. Pom dance is the  use of pom-poms during kickline dances. Jazz and lyrical dance include jumping techniques, twists and precise foot and leg movements. 

The dance team promotes school spirit and encourages players during football and basketball games. For International Dance Day, the team posts pictures from performances and fun memories they have shared. 

“The goal of the dance team is to represent Chantilly and do what we love,” sophomore and dance team member Claire Myers said. “Our team brings us all together, [and] to succeed, we have to work as one.” 

Another highlighted dance club is Chantilly Bhangra. This is a folk dance that originated in the Punjab region of India to celebrate the coming of spring. In recent years, Bhangra has been mixed into other forms of dance such as reggae. Chantilly Bhangra dances to music composed of unique beats that encourage energetic dancing. In the club, one can learn complex movements and create group choreographies for performances. To celebrate International Dance Day, the club performs a dance at International Night at school. This celebration is usually held in March from around 7-10 p.m. for the audience to experience different expressions of art.

“The club is open to dancers of all levels, so even if you’re new to Bhangra, there will be [instruction on] the basics,” junior and member of the Chantilly Bhangra Neha Konduru said. “Bhangra allowed me to make many new friends and have the chance to connect with my culture.” 

While it originally emerged from the Bronx in New York City, hip hop has a worldwide presence, as it is a popular dance in many countries. The dance incorporates elements of deejaying, rapping, rhyming and graffiti painting. Moreover, an emerging club at school is the K-Pop Hip Hop Dance Club, which allows dancers to experience different hip hop styles that interest them. The team holds Fridays as “dance days” and performs at International Night to celebrate International Dance Day.

“The club is really about making even new dancers feel comfortable dancing, especially around other people, and [finding] the confidence to pick up any dance they want,” co-founder of the K-Pop Hip Hop Dance Club Cindy Wu said. “Hip-Hop lets me fall into all these different creative characters [that are] shaped by the style of the music.” 

Dance enables individuals to express themselves through a passionate and creative outlet. Many of these dance groups celebrate International Dance Day by sharing pictures of their teams’ dances on social media and recreating dances they performed on International Night. To learn more about the way Chantilly celebrates International Dance Day, one can visit Chantilly INite, to find pictures and dates of the celebration. 

“Dance is so diverse [as there are] so many different styles and forms,” Myers said. “Dance is a way I can share my emotions with others as every dance tells a different story.” 

“Dance is so diverse [as there are] so many different styles and forms,” Myers said. “Dance is a way I can share my emotions with others as every dance tells a different story.”

— Claire Myers