Sweatpants aren't the typical attire in which to watch a dance showcase.

Couches aren’t the typical place to sit while watching the dancers perform.

COVID-19 guidelines make having a community dance showcase difficult, but POYDS Dance Company isn’t letting that affect showing off the hard work put in the past few months.

This year’s POYDS’ Performing Arts Showcase allows the audience to watch from the comfort of their own homes with a live virtual showcase at 6:30 p.m. on July 12.

Along with dancers ages three to adult from across the state, the showcase will feature guest vocalists include Lacey Franzen, Logan Capek, Josie Anderson and Stephanie Coley.

This hour-and-a-half showcase theme is “Take the Leap and Follow Your Dreams.”

POYDS owner Kayleigh Schadwinkel-Hickman says this theme has a larger meaning this year.

This theme “hits home” for Schadwinkel-Hickman, she said. It captures her adventure of following her dream to pursue dance full time about one year ago.

It also resonates with other dancers including adults and musical theater students working to broaden their skills in the industry, she said.

This high-quality virtual showcase will have pre-recorded performances from students in their own homes. These segments will be layered to different dancers at one time. A virtual program will be provided to lead the audience through the showcase.

While other dance studios across the nation struggled with the decision to have a showcase or not, POYDS made the decision early to have it no matter what, Schadwinkel-Hickman said.

“We are really excited that we can still provide this outlet for our students, most importantly to showcase their talent and also to provide a performing arts outlet for our community,” Schadwinkel-Hickman said.

Schadwinkel-Hickman has been teaching dance classes virtually for almost a year and doing virtual choreography for two years.

“When COVID hit, it really didn’t phase us because we already had a live virtual dance program established already,” Schadwinkel-Hickman said.

POYDS was the first dance studio in Nebraska to have a live virtual dance program established before COVID-19 and was one of the few studios in Nebraska to not miss a single dance class because of the pandemic, Schadwinkel-Hickman said.

Schadwinkel-Hickman said the showcase should be treated like a live performance.

Individuals are asked to not be on cell phones or electronic devices. Audio should be muted on Zoom during the performance and video may be on or off at the individual’s discretion. Audience members are encouraged to clap in between performances.

A special surprise is planned for the finale of the showcase.

Registration will be required, but is free, in order to get the Zoom link and password to watch. Registration is posted on POYDS Dance Company’s Facebook page.

Free-will donations will be accepted to give back to the dance program and help with the costs of the free virtual programming that has been offered.

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