You Can Do It

You CAN Do It

Posted 9 August 2016 12:00 AM by Jaheem Alleyne

Nothing excites me more each summer than working with the phenomenal Teen Leaders that City Spotlights bring together each year. Their energy and their drive is extremely motivating and inspirational. Every year brings something new and each summer I look forward to what they will create and what each teen will bring to the table individually.

Although I didn’t get the opportunity to spend a lot of time with the teens, I feel like I still got to see them challenge themselves. Asking all 60 teens to pull through and learn a flashmob dance when the majority of them have different specialty areas outside of dance was a huge challenge within itself. Throughout the process, some of them may begin to feel overwhelmed, exhausted and may even allow some doubt to creep up into their minds as they start to second guess themselves. But believe it or not, I think that’s a good thing. I love watching this happen. This happens with people in general and not just the teens of City Spotlights. Most people don’t understand the concept of practice and patients and expect to grasp something the first time they try it, and if they don’t, it’s either too hard or they simply “can’t do it.” False. They CAN do it and they WILL do it. And that to me is the best part of teaching throughout the summer. Once we get to that point in the summer where they all have the choreography down, there’s no limit to how high their confidence goes when they perform, and those previous doubts are suddenly out the window.

Entirely I think my favorite part of the summer much like every other summer is being able to watch them out on tour performing the flashmob and in the final showcase, and having so much fun while doing it. Rehearsals are extremely draining and repetitive, but once they are outside in front of an audience, they can do it a million more times if they are asked to, with just enough energy to perform it one more time after that. That alone is extremely rewarding. Also watching them close out the show with the flashmob this year was the best that I have ever seen it! The energy was high, and they brought life out of the audience and they made me want to jump in and perform with them. Seeing them build a bond and trust with one another throughout the summer and sharing the stage is something special and I can’t wait to see it happen again! If only we could speed up time!

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