Kimberly Lewis, of Dance Studio 111, is no stranger to the Ahwatukee Foothills dance community.
But this year, her new nonprofit organization is aiming to raise a new generation of dancers, choreographers, and teachers.
The nonprofit, Next Generation of Fine Arts, will directly benefit the dance programs at Desert Vista and Mountain Pointe high schools.
After nearly 20 years in the Ahwatukee Foothills, Lewis said her inspiration to give back came from all of her support from the community.
“I’ve been around this long because of the community, and if this grows, we’ll eventually give to all of our local schools,” Lewis said.
As the organization’s first step, the Young Choreographers Competition is calling all dancers and choreographers ages 11 to 19 to participate.
To be qualified for the competition, hopefuls must submit a video of a dance routine by Dec. 3. The routines must be family appropriate, under five minutes, and feature groups with a minimum of four dancers.
After the videos are in, Lewis said each routine will be posted to the organization’s Facebook page where groups that receive 175 “Likes” will make it to the Feb. 2 competition at the Desert Vista Fine Arts Theater.
“It’s a chance to express their creativity,” Lewis said.
Awards for the competition include cash prizes and scholarships to Dance Studio 111 in Ahwatukee.
Lewis, who said she was “amazed” at the creativity of some groups, mentioned that a buzz is already going around in the dance community.
“The girls are getting together not just by high school, but asking different people to be on their teams,” she said.
In the future, Lewis hopes to plan a similar competition for voice and singing to support choir departments.
“This is just our first step, but we need to keep these programs going,” Lewis said.
Video submissions for the Young Choreographers Competition are due by Dec. 3, and need to be emailed to NextGenerationofFineArts@gmail.com.
For more details on how to enter, or more about the organization, visit nextgenerationoffinearts.com.
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