Emily Ewing: Dancing Up the Ladder

When Emily Ewing ’14’s parents dropped her off at a quaint local dance studio for weekly classes at the age of three, they had no idea she would find a passion that she would continue to pursue through the age of 18.

“While most kids drop out of dance when they’re five or six because they find sports and other things, I did not. Dance was something for me that naturally clicked. Dance was a place for me where I could feel confident and feel that I was doing something beautiful that I really liked,” said Ewing.

Ewing brought this enthusiasm for dance with her to Andover, helping her to land a part in a sophisticated Dance Open number her Junior year.

“One of my favorite memories was when Itried out for Dance Open my [Junior] year and I was cast in Kristina Rex [’11]’s Steamed Heat number, which was a huge jazz number. Graham [Johns ’14] was in it, and I was really excited to be dancing with older people and to be dancing with a boy because that had never happened to me before. I was just really proud of myself for being able to go out and dance with bigger kids. Even though I didn’t really know the steps or what I was doing, it was a lot of fun,” said Ewing.

With the guidance of Erin Strong, Chair of Theatre and Dance, and Judith Wombwell, Instructor in Theatre and Dance, Ewing has perfected her technical skills.

“I’ve improved so much in terms of technique here. My teachers here have been fabulous so I’ve become a much better dancer. I don’t dance with thumbs out like claws anymore and I point my toes a lot better now,” said Ewing.

Ewing has also conquered many fears during her time dancing at Andover.

“‘Dido and Aeneas’ was a big moment for mebecause I had to do a ton of solo work. I had never been able to do a solo before without forgetting it, and so it was a really big moment for me when the show went off as a success and I was able to overcome that fear of performing by myself,” continued Ewing.

Serving as last year’s Director of DanceLabs and this year’s Co-Head of Blue Strut and Captain of Andover Dance Group (ADG), Ewing has been offered many opportunities to be a leader through dance at Andover.

“I love helping other dancers feel comfortable in the dance community. I feel like a big stereotype about dance is that it’s really competitive and cliquey and nobody really likes each other, but at Andover it feels like a family and that we’re all in this together. We’re dancing together and not as competitors,” said Ewing.

Ewing is looking forward to exploring more techniques at college and participating in groups similar to Blue Strut and ADG.