A Love for Dance


Elena Murrieta

Kendal Ozawa a dance major who is a freshman and new to LVA but isn’t new to dance and what it has to offer.

Elena Murrieta, Reporter

Kendal Ozawa a dance major who is a freshman and new to LVA but isn’t new to dance and what it has to offer. 

Kendal Ozawa is a freshman dance major at Las Vegas Academy (LVA), but this is not her first year in the dance community or performing as a dancer. “I really love it,” Ozawa responded when asked how she felt about attending LVA. “It’s kind of amazing doing something that I love every single day.” Since Ozawa has been dancing for years and is familiar with various aspects of the dance world, she offers this advice to anyone who is a beginning dancer, “I would say be confident in yourself and don’t get a big head, because you’re gonna be really good at things, but you’re also going to be really bad at things. Everybody’s going to be working at their own pace. You’re gonna be learning at your own pace. You need to just believe in yourself and do whatever you need to do to succeed.”  

Though Ozawa has been dancing for many years, the basic concepts learned and mastered at a very young age laid the foundation for the skill level Ozawa possesses now. “I took like a very little baby ballet class. And that kind of just set the tone. I mean, I did a bunch of things. I did a bunch of sports when I was little, I did soccer and stuff like that. But nothing really stuck like dance did, and it was just kind of my thing as soon as it happened, even though I was so young,” Ozawa said. In the music world, there are many different styles of music. There are also different styles of dance.” Ozawa added, “I really like hip-hop. You don’t need to really worry about being a proper technique-style dancer, and you can just go with the flow. You need to make it look clean, but it’s a lot of fun to just do whatever you want.” The ability to express oneself is what Ozawa seems to love about dancing, especially hip-hop-style dancing. 

At LVA, most students seem to have had a person or something in their life that has influenced them to select and pursue their craft, or has nurtured their interest in their craft. Ozawa phrased it this way when asked who had helped influence them into going into dance, “Well, I danced with this girl named Morgan, who actually goes here, but she and I danced at my studio for a really long time. She was always the best dancer, but she was also the nicest one to me. And I just like, I’ve always wanted to be like her, because dancers get a bad rap sometimes.” Ozawa went on to say that with the good comes the bad; dancers seem to be more prone to having negative stereotypes tied to them.

Speaking as an experienced member of the dance world, Ozawa offered this observation, “Well, first of all, I think it’s a lot of pop culture. Things like cheerleaders and dancers are always the mean people in movies, TV shows, and books. And then also, you’re always gonna get mean, but that’s with everything. You’re gonna get a couple mean ones and those are always going to stick out besides the good ones.” Continuing on this topic, Ozawa reported they have not experienced very many of those stereotypes, however, they know people who have and have been affected negatively by them. 

Being a dance major or being able to dance, in general, seems to have some benefits to it since it is something most people can’t do. “When you’re good, it’s really impressive,” Ozawa commented. “When people say oh, you’re a dancer; show me something. You can just do something crazy cool, and they’ll be immediately impressed. And like, that’s how I always was. When I was growing up, I was not a really good dancer, yet. When I asked somebody to show me something it was always just the coolest thing ever.” 

As time goes by, a person can grow and learn things about themselves they didn’t know before. This is something Ozawa has learned from being a dancer and being a performer, “How much I like performing is a really big thing I learned from dance,” added. “Just being on stage all the time makes it a lot easier to be on stage like doing theater. And I just kind of life to be up there at this point. Like it’s such a big part of my life. And I don’t get super nervous going on stage. I just love performing.” 

In the end, everyone has something they love to do, whether it is dancing, singing, athletics, creative art, or something else. As with all other LVA students, this freshman has found that niche in the performing arts.