Kayla Thomas - May 2016 Judges' Choice
Thank you so much! My name is Kayla Thomas, the dancer in the "Dance of the Night" video. I attend Cleveland School of the Arts and it is made up of a number of performing, literary, and visual art majors. The people in the film and literary programs at my school are so talented. They create short films, photography, stories, and poems that can come together to create a work like "Dance of the Night."We often collaborate with each other. So when when Tiana Wilson wrote the poem, the photography department decided to turn it into a film, and they needed a dancer. I was lucky enough to be the dancer chosen for it. Ms. Kay Eichman is the ballet teacher at the school, and she was kind enough to choreograph my solo for the video. She was a former professional dancer with the Cleveland Ballet and has been my ballet teacher since I was in 6th grade. She is one of the teachers I would like to acknowledge for helping me through the years on training and mentorship.
 
I started dancing when I was six and started with ballet at the Nevada Ballet Theatre. At age nine I moved to Cleveland and was enrolled in The Cleveland School of the Arts. There I was introduced to modern, contemporary, jazz, and African dance. Under the direction of Jessica Spurlock, Terrance Greene, Aseelah Allen, and Imani Jackson, I am able to explore new styles of dances and ways to express myself. I don't participate in dance competitions, but I always wanted to know what it would be like to be in one. I think they are a great form of exposure and experience. This summer I am planning to attend The Ailey School Summer Intensive, there I hope to study more modern to add to my training, but not lose ballet during those six weeks. I share a love for ballet and modern equally, but this summer I hope to find the style of dance I hope to pursue as a career. So one day, after high school and college, I hope to be a part of a professional dance company.
 
Again thank you to Harlequin Floors for this opportunity.