Steamboat Springs There is a lot involved in being a stage mom for the Let's Dance Spring Program.
"They're all backstage entertaining the 14 three-year-olds and getting them on stage when they need to be there, and giving them Cheerios," said Tamara Bereznak, owner, producer, director and choreographer of Let's Dance.
The spring performance will showcase Bereznak's students who range from 3-year-olds to women in their '60s. Each dancer will perform in two routines that embody two different styles of dance. Each piece in the show is tailored to the personalities of the dancers in each class.
"I wait a few weeks after class starts in the fall to get a feel of the students in the classroom," Bereznak said. "I have to get to know the kids and how they would portray a particular piece or characterization."
The music for each piece is chosen the same way.
"The 3-year-olds need Disney and the teens needed something very contemporary," Bereznak said. "They enjoy their music, and that's what I need to adjust to. There's going to be ballet flute to Shakira hip-hop."
Every year, grandparents fly in from out of state to see their grandchildren in a performance that will include tap, jazz, hip-hop, ballet and African dancing.
"You'd think all year round the kids are just fooling around and in their own little world," Bereznak said. "But when you put them on stage and they're smiling and doing it right and feeling it, then you think they really were listening."
Bereznak holds two dress rehearsals every year for the "newbies" and three-year-olds.
"The first dress rehearsal is a disaster," she said. "In the second one, they have the lights in their eyes with people actually watching them, and by the time the program comes around, they got it."
Bereznak's students never fail to instill a sense of pride in her.
"Sometimes I sit in my directing chair and cry because they are feeling it and are proud of what they're doing," she said. "It's great to be a positive influence in their lives and have them feel good about what they are doing and showing (in a performance) that is well attended. It makes me real proud of them."