Lake Charles Civic Ballet principal dancer Katelyn D. Chargois, a home-educated senior from Sulphur will attend the University of Oklahoma where she will study dance and ballet performance. (Cameron Durham / Special to the American Press)
Last Modified: Thursday, May 16, 2013 2:07 PM
The study of ballet has meant more than just learning to dance to a graduating student of Lady Leah Lafargue School of the Dance.
“It gives you so much confidence, grace and poise,” Katelyn D. Chargois of Sulphur said.
“If you see a girl walking in high heels, you can always tell if she is a ballet dance by her proper balance and stature.”
The school and Lake Charles Civic Ballet will present their annual spring performance at 3 p.m. Sunday, May 19, at Rosa Hart Theater. Admission for general seating is free, and reserved seats are available for a nominal donation.
Chargois is a home-school senior and has been accepted into the dance program at the University of Oklahoma. She is the daughter of Von and Rhonda Chargois of Sulphur.
“My family is happy that I will be going to a name school and continuing my dance,” she said. She has received scholarships from The Foundation of Lake Charles Memorial Hospital Patrons of The Daffodil Tea and the OU School of Dance. She is waiting to hear about her scholarship applications to the university itself. She will pursue a degree in dance performance.
“They have a really fine dance program there,” she said. “The director met Lady Leah at a workshop, and they have similar methods of teaching, so I will be glad to be working with them.”
The application process was as rigorous as applying for an athletic scholarship.
“It was really scary. I had to audition and fill out all kinds of paperwork,” she said. “My brother is a baseball player, now playing in the minor leagues, and I know the application process for me was just as tough as it was for athletic scholarships.
Chargois has been studying dance since she was 6 or 7 and taking lessons twice a week. Now she has four classes a week, two rehearsals if needed, does Pilates twice a week and does yoga twice a week.
She hopes to dance professionally for a year or two after college and then own her own dance school. She is already teaching with Lady Holly Hathaway Kaough at the Lady Leah school.
The Sunday performance will showcase Lady Leah school students’ abilities in ballet, tap and jazz.
Among the featured pieces that afternoon will be “L’Academie du Monsieur Dubriovsky,” a Civic Ballet classic about a girls’ finishing school.
Set to a medley of Gershwin music, audience members will recognize the familiar tunes in “New York in June.”
The ballet “Monkeyshines” is a fantasy piece about a male monkey who, finding a golden weasel attractive, makes the female monkeys jealous.