Spirit of Dance Club uniting different cultures among students


Nandini Paidesetty

Coppell High School sophomores Aarushi Anand and Medha Jain dance at the Canyon Ranch Elementary field to practice on Dec. 10. Anand and Jain’s love for Bollywood and hip-hop fusion dance sparked them to create the Spirit of Dance club.

Drishti Gupta, Staff Writer

As the melodic music fills the room, Coppell High School sophomores Aarushi Anand and Medha Jain gracefully move across the floor in smooth, fluid movements. With their bright smiles and beaming faces, the dancers express nothing but pure joy. 

In mid-September, Anand and Jain started the Spirit of Dance club to spread their passion for dance in the community. 

“Medha and I were both really passionate about dance,” Anand said. “We decided we wanted to make [this] club to unite CHS students. We thought dance was a good way to unite the different cultures across each of us.”

In addition to uniting cultures, Anand and Jain hope to teach dance skills to club members and help them improve. 

“The purpose of our club is to help people improve their dance skills, and even if they don’t know how to dance, they can get better at it,” Jain said. “We also want to learn other dance forms. We hope that everyone can accomplish learning dance and doing something that is not [what] they would normally do, such as learning a different dance type or doing a performance.”

Currently, the club is focusing on and choreographing a Bollywood dance, however, in the future they plan on choreographing for other dance forms including jazz, ballet and hip-hop. 

“We teach the choreography step-by-step,” Anand said. “Once we do a whole song, we practice it for one or two weeks.”

CHS sophomores Aarushi Anand and Medha Jain plan out choreography for their club on Dec. 10. Anand and Jain’s love for Bollywood and hip hop fusion dance sparked them to create the Spirit of Dance club. (Nandini Paidesetty)

Although the club cannot participate in any performances due to COVID-19, it plans to have members dress up according to a certain song and do a Zoom recording of their dance. It hopes to put up the recordings on a YouTube channel or some other platform. In addition to not being able to participate in in-person performances, Spirit of Dance has faced several other challenges due to COVID-19. 

“Normally, we would practice outside of school or during school, [but due to COVID-19], it’s really hard to get everyone to practice outside of school and during zoom calls because people have things they are doing,” Jain said. “It’s hard to show everyone the correct steps and communicate the exact moves we are doing over Zoom.”

Another challenge of Zoom meetings is that members can be less engaged, which defeats the initial purpose of Spirit of Dance. 

“If we were in person, it is so much easier for people to not be shy,” Anand said. “People are shy over zoom and in turning on their camera because they are afraid of making mistakes. If we were in person, we would all be together and would be dancing together so people wouldn’t just shy away from the club.”

Despite these challenges, the club has found ways to adapt to them, holding various practice Zoom meetings throughout the week which allow members who are struggling to attend and review the steps. Through their practices and club activities, the officers have noted significant improvements among the members. 

“[Before] some of the members were very camera-shy,” Jain said. “Now, people are actually dancing and we can see them improve.”  

As the club expands, it considers ways it can improve in the future, such as recording more dance videos and choreographing new multi-cultural routines. 

 Carla Martinez, the club’s teacher sponsor, also finds the club to be beneficial and inviting for CHS students. 

“I like how it allows the girls to explore dancing in an environment other than a traditional classroom or dance studio setting,” Martinez said. “They don’t have to pay anything or go to a special place in order to do something that they love. They get to be with like-minded people who share their passion.”

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