Dancers delighted for studio return after months of virtual classes

Local News

WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — After the continued delays to have physical classes, dancers can now plie and more now that the Wichita Falls Youth Ballet’s doors are reopened.

To make things better, they are not only back but have new safety guidelines.

Unmotivated, that’s how two dancers, Asher Stephenson and Briar Vold, described their feelings the weeks they spent at home doing ballet classes virtually.

“Here I know that I’m going to come in every day, and I’m going to work out, and it was really hard for me to stay in shape,” Stephenson said.

Vold agreed.

“It’s a lot more fun being in the studio dancing with people rather than just being in this tiny square corner of your house,” Vold said.

“We really thought through, did a lot of research, read a lot of articles from the health department and what the state was recommending and came up with a plan,” Wichita Falls Youth Ballet owner Mishic Liberatore said.

To ensure dancers got back in the studio doing what they love, the owners decided to get a little creative and installed “corona bars”, PVC pipes with shower curtains hanging on them to separate dancers and teachers.

And there is more.

“We are requiring all of our dancers to wear masks in class if they are 10 or older,” Liberatore said.

Liberatore said she knows many people think dance is a solo sport but she disagrees saying dancers feed off each other’s energy and she knows her dancers missed that.

“Being at home by yourself isolated, it wasn’t as much camaraderie as they were used to,” Liberatore said.

Bold and Stephenson said if wearing a mask and social distancing all they need to be back in the studio, then they’ll take it!

“I’m just really hoping that we can keep doing this because I am really happy to be back at all,” Stephenson said.

Bold said this time away gave them a new appreciation for their sport.

“I feel like we are a lot more grateful for it, being able to dance because we had those months where we were just stuck in our houses and not being able to do anything,” Vold said.

Liberatore and her dancers said they are happy to have the space they need but also to have the camaraderie they are used to.

While classes are back in session, class sizes for kids nine and below have been reduced groups of 10.

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