Regan Baker receives state dance award
STEVENSVILLE — Kent Island High School senior, Regan Baker, 17, has been awarded the All-State Dance Award. According to KIHS dance teacher Amber Wright, “Regan is the only student from the Eastern Shore to receive this honor this year.”
Regan, who began dancing at age 4 at the Dashiell School of Dancing in Stevensville, has danced many different parts in the annual holiday “Nutcracker” over the years. This year, she performed two parts, that of the Mouse King and also the Dew Drop parts. Last year she performed as the Sugar Plum Fairy as part of the Chesapeake Ballet Company, held at the Children’s Theater of Annapolis.
Regan received an email from the state the day after her audition. She and Wright opened the email together in Wright’s office at school.
When they read that Regan had received the award, “We both screamed and started dancing together around the room. It was really funny because other students were there at the time and they at first didn’t know why we were making such a fuss,” said Regan.
Wright said, “Regan is ver y deser ving of this award, and she’s such a good person.”
Regan has a cumulative GPA of 3.76 as a student and is a member of the KIHS National Honor Society. She has applied to seven different colleges, but has not decided where she will go to school after graduating from KIHS this coming spring. She has decided she wants to major in dance in college.
Regan will be performing soon in the upcoming production of “Sleeping Beauty.” She also has at least two dance recitals she will be performing in, one of those through Dashiell School of Dancing in June.
Dance school founder Wally Dashiell said, “At one point, when she was about 12-years-old, Regan became unhappy with herself. She didn’t think she was very pretty or coordinated. She told me she was going to quit dancing. I told her not to give up and stay with it. She followed my instructions.”
Regan said, “Mrs. Dashiell has been the biggest influence in my life as a dancer. She always had faith in me. She’s the reason I kept going.”
Teacher Wright is also “a Dashiell girl,” one of numerous former Dashiell dancers who have passed on the passion they learned from their original teacher. Wright proudly tells people all the time, “I learned my dancing at Dashiell School of Dancing.”
Others who are outstanding examples of Dashiell’s instruction, former Queen Anne’s County Public Schools Superintendent Dr. Carol Williamson, KIHS teacher Amy Tedford Waskey, and Evelyn Paddy, who is now the proud owner of Dashiell School of Dancing.
Williamson previously said, “Mrs Dashiell taught me to have poise and be gracious, even in difficult situations.”
Regan is the granddaughter of Wheeler and Holly Baker of Chester.
Regan Baker, front center, recently danced both the parts of the Mouse King and Dew Drop Fairy.