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March 17, 2014
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Flash mob makes dancing accessible

A group of dancers affiliated with the Sierra Dance Institute staged a flash mob in the meat department at Raley’s grocery store Saturday afternoon.

There were a total of 17 performers, with ages ranging from 11 to people in their mid-30s. They were recruited using fliers, Facebook and old-fashioned networking.

Organizer Devyn Nikulla Cottrell says she chose that location because she’s a regular customer there, and the massive floor plan offered enough space and freedom to do something different.

Cottrell has been performing since 2005 when she began working with a dance company and choreographing. She also teaches musical theater.

Cottrell says she often hears people limit themselves by saying they can’t dance. She wanted to show people how accessible dancing can be. She also aimed to connect members of this community with one another.

After professional rehearsals in bigger cities where she knew very few of the dancers involved in the show, Cottrell tries to make the rehearsals she conducts here in Grass Valley more community oriented.

“The rehearsal process is my favorite part,” Cottrell said. “I quite often don’t perform in my own pieces because I love to practice.”

She worked with choreographer Daisy Hang to create the flash-mob piece, and they say they wanted to create a positive experience for their audience.

“The title of the song is ‘Happy,’ ” Cottrell said. “Any time you can share positivity, it creates a good vibration for the community you live in.”

Readers interested in taking dance classes or participating in Cottrell’s next flash-mob event can find her at the Sierra Dance Institute, 314 Main St. in Grass Valley, or by calling 530-477-7644.

The studio is right above the Center for the Arts.

To contact staff writer Dave Brooksher, send emails to dbrooksher@theunion.com or call 530-477-4230.


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The Union Updated Mar 18, 2014 01:03PM Published Mar 18, 2014 07:06PM Copyright 2014 The Union. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.