Let’s keep on dancing, Nevada County | TheUnion.com

Let’s keep on dancing, Nevada County

A vibrant arts scene is among the most important reasons that we savor life in western Nevada County.

While dance doesn’t always have the highest profile of the performing arts locally, the community is home to excellent choreography and excellent dance performance among young people and adults alike.

Reach for the Stars, an annual springtime extravaganza (the word is not too strong) of dance, long has been one of the most important showcases for local choreography. The Nevada County Arts Council, sponsor of Reach for the Stars, has put the event on hold for a year. While we’re willing to go without Reach for the Stars for a while, the event is too important to be allowed to lapse indefinitely.

Last spring, the 10th annual Reach for the Stars featured performances by 300 dancers – everyone from talented kids to the amazing dance troupe at Nevada Union High School to some of those adult dancers who stop shows. Audiences, even if nearly overwhelmed by the sheer volume of performances, still were wowed. It’s a high-demand ticket.

The Nevada County Arts Council wonders, however, if Reach for the Stars isn’t in some danger of collapsing under its own weight. Some representatives note that Reach for the Stars began as a showcase for top dancers but slowly took on the looks of a recital open to more dancers. They wonder if audiences might appreciate fewer but better performances. And the arts council needs some breathing space to make good decisions – the kind of breathing space that can come only from a one-year break in the Reach for the Stars program.

We’re journalists rather than dancers for a reason, but we wonder if the community and its dancers might be well served by even more dance performances.

If we have a desire to showcase our top dancers, let’s do so. And if we have a desire to see recital performances by a large number of dancers, let’s do that, too. We’d guess that an audience exists for more dance. The big question is whether there’s enough managerial energy in the arts community to successfully mount one more big show each year.

The arts council promises that Reach for the Stars will be back next year. It’s an important promise to keep.

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