The Student News Site of Marshfield High School

The Marshfield Times

The Student News Site of Marshfield High School

The Marshfield Times

The Student News Site of Marshfield High School

The Marshfield Times

Aly Welch dances with heart

By Heather Whitty | Copy Editor

From tap to jazz to contemporary dance, junior Aly Welch does it all. Ever since she started at Rhythms West Dance Academy at the age of eight, Welch has filled her life with the thing she loves most: dance.

Welch’s mother, Annette Welch, initially asked her if she wanted to take a ballet class and said that Welch took an immediate liking to it.

“She was a natural,” Annette said. “She loved it.”

Welch started at Rhythms West Dance Academy, a studio located in Empire that offers a variety of dance classes.

Welch continued to dance, trying out many different styles, and is now in the intermediate level. She does all types of dance but particularly likes tap and contemporary.

“[I like] tap mostly because it’s rhythmic; it’s challenging,” Welch said. “Contemporary is the easiest one to feel.”

Welch has many reasons for loving dance but mostly believes that it is a good way to convey herself.

“It’s a way to express emotion,” Welch said. “If I’m having a bad day, I can just dance it out. It just makes me feel better.”

Heather Dell-Skinner, Welch’s coach since she was nine, appreciates the leading role Welch takes in the class.

“She is our primary role model,” Dell-Skinner said. “She’s a great asset to us.”

Welch uses her influence in class to help the other dancers improve.

“She’s very passionate and strives for perfection,” Dell-Skinner said. “She’s very good at pulling everyone along with her with her drive and her energy.”

Not only does Welch shine in class, she also stands out when she performs.

“[When she’s on stage] she lights up,” Annette said. “I just love to watch her perform.”

Welch works hard to continue improving in dance. She practices Monday through Saturday, sometimes until 7 or 8 p.m.

Ashley Woodworth, a junior at North Bend High School who has been dancing with Welch since she began at the dance academy, attested to her dedication to dance.

“She comes here every day until she’s sent home,” Woodworth said.

Getting this practice in is important for the dance competitions that Welch takes part in.

Welch, who has a leading role in many of the dances, believes the dancers from Rhythms West Dance Academy do well when they compete.

“Our solos usually do really well, and our groups do really well,” Welch said. “Our duos and trios usually get second or first.”

Another reason Welch spends so much of her time practicing is that she hopes to continue dancing later on.

“It’s what she wants to do with her life so she puts all her energy into it,” Annette said.

Welch’s coach feels that her passion for dance is what really highlights her performances.

“You can tell when someone dances by the way they look and the expression on their face that they really love it,” Dell-Skinner said. “When Aly dances, it’s her whole heart and her whole soul. There’s no holding back with her.”

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Aly Welch dances with heart