The Shafter Press - Serving the community since 1922

By Jamie Stewart
The Shafter Press 

Dancers go back in time

Planet Dance pays visit to the '80s


Jamie Stewart | Wasco Tribune

The ballet team performs to "Africa" by Toto.

The Planet Dance team took the audiences on a trip back to the 80s when they presented their Mid-Year Gala on Saturday at the Fred Starrh Performing Arts Center at Shafter High School. The theater was decked out in the décor of the 1980s, complete with leg warmers, big hair, and glitter. The Tap team opened the show with a toe-tapping routine to "Call Me" by Blondie. The dancers showed uniformity in their steps as they brought the song to life.

There was also numbers in the first half of the show by the Ballet Corps, who performed a routine to Toto's "Africa". The group, led by teacher Jill Jimenez, showed their dexterity and balance as they displayed moves on pointe, as well as spins and plies.

The crowd went wild as the Hip Hop team came on stage and performed a rousing rendition of "Walk This Way" by Aerosmith. All of the teams performed throughout the event. There were numbers by the allet, tap, hip hop and jazz. There are different levels of each genre, with beginning and advanced groups for every medium.

Jamie Stewart | Wasco Tribune

The jazz team took the stage for "Love is a Battlefield."

Planet Dance is an award-winning troupe that travels throughout the state during the season, competing at KAR events, Radix, several Hollywood Vibe events, as well as a couple of Velocity events during the year. They are also national champions after winning the title in Las Vegas for the team competition. They also have several dancers who have won individual awards for their performances as well as trips to New York City for an All-Star event that is by invitation only. You can also catch the teams in action locally in parades, community events, and their big Christmas Show that takes place in December.

The company is family-owned, with Corinne Matera the matriarch. Her children Jacob Hernandez and Jill Jimenez teach several classes and are in charge of the competition teams. They also have excellent help with teachers Miss Veronica and Miss Vicky who teach multiple classes.

They have students from Shafter, Wasco, and several surrounding communities who want to be a part of this award-winning team. Corinne also runs a boutique in Bakersfield that sells costumes, work-out gear, as well as t-shirts and dance accessories. This local, family owned company keeps entertaining, as well as giving our children the chance to express their artistic sides, as well as turning them into fit, confident young people.


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