Rachel Calicott Dances into the Spotlight

Isabelle Lawhorn

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Lots of little girls dream of growing up to be a ballerina and some girls actually do. Rachel Calicott has been dancing for nine years. I asked her how she got involved in dance, she told me when she was younger she used to walk with her foot turned in and she went into dance to help it and then she started liking it and getting into dance, “There was no one or nothing really that inspired me to get into dancing.” I thought it might be difficult to balance school and dance but Rachel said, “No, I just have to get my homework done before dance.” Rachel says most people practice only practice 20 minutes a day, but she practices, “30 minutes to an hour since she has had many past injuries.” What kind of warm ups do you do before a dance recital? She responded with,  “I do a full bar and just go through what a ballet class would be like.”

Throughout their career dancers often have many injuries that they have to work through. Rachel is no exception. She had tendonitis because she was so hard on her feet and the constant stretching caused her tendons to inflame and it was only discovered once it got bad. She also experienced a back injury that caused her to feel pain every time she moved, even though it wasn’t a break.

Even though she has clearly experienced pain while dancing, she still loves it and claims her favorite style of dance is hip hop, “[my favorite] would have to be hip hop because you just get to do what you want and be free and wild and that is how I am everyday.” I asked her out of all the productions she has been in which one was your favorite, “Giselle is my favorite production that I have been in because it is a really beautiful ballet. At first it starts out slow but the second part of Giselle is really amazing.”

Many people want to be part of something extraordinary but it takes work and pain to get there. Click the link https://youtu.be/CbUdk6_KN5o to watch a video of Rachel performing Thriller downtown Fort Smith as part of the Halloween festivities. If you want to go see Rachel perform live, she will be dancing in the Nutcracker in Fort Smith in December.  

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Rachel Calicott Dances into the Spotlight