Stu­dent dancer New York City-bound

Central Leader - - BODY CARE - SHANI WIL­LIAMS

An Auck­land stu­dent is head­ing to the Big Ap­ple to dance with a com­pany that per­formed at Don­ald Trump’s in­au­gu­ra­tion.

Dioce­san School for Girls stu­dent Alisha Huang is one of 30 dancers se­lected out of more than 4000 en­trants world­wide to join the Rock­ettes Sum­mer In­ten­sive pro­gram.

The Rock­ettes are a New York dance com­pany founded in 1925.

Each year the group per­forms Amer­ica’s largest hol­i­day pro­duc­tion Christ­mas Spec­tac­u­lar at Ra­dio City Mu­sic Hall - in front of an au­di­ence of more than 2 mil­lion peo­ple.

They also per­formed at the in­au­gu­ra­tion of George Bush in 2001.

Huang is the only suc­cess­ful New Zealand ap­pli­cant and will head to New York for two weeks be­gin­ning July 21.

Huang, who be­gan danc­ing at 6 years old, said she had fol­lowed the Rock­ettes her en­tire life.

‘‘It’s a dream come true. The Rock­ettes is a legacy of women dancers. To know I’ll be join­ing them – it’s just amaz­ing,’’ Huang said.

To be con­sid­ered for the pro­gram dancers must be at least 14 years old, have a min­i­mum of five years train­ing in tap, jazz and bal­let, and sub­mit a video au­di­tion show­cas­ing their jazz, tap and eye-high kicks.

‘‘I never thought I’d get se­lected – there are thou­sands and thou­sands of au­di­tion­ees. There are au­di­tions in 15 states in Amer­ica, plus in­ter­na­tional aud- itions from all over the world,’’ Huang said.

The Rock­ettes Sum­mer In­ten­sive in­cludes train­ing in the Rock­ettes ’’pre­ci­sion’’ style and con­nect­ing with the pro­fes­sional dance world.

The ex­pe­ri­ence could be lifechang­ing, Huang said.

‘‘We’re men­tored all the way through by the Rock­ettes, and we’ll be danc­ing in front of Rock­ette com­pany direc­tors and other in­flu­en­tial chore­og­ra­phers,’’ she said.

The two weeks will cul­mi­nate in a per­for­mance at the New York Univer­sity Skir­ball Cen­tre for the Per­form­ing Arts.

In its 15 years the Sum­mer In­ten­sive pro­gram has pro­duced 60 per­ma­nent Rock­ettes and Huang hopes to be the next one.

She will re­turn to New York in April 2018 and au­di­tion for a per­ma­nent place in the kick line.

If suc­cess­ful, Huang would be New Zealand’s first-ever Rock­ette.


Alisha Huang will au­di­tion to be New Zealand’s first-ever Rock­ette in 2018.

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