Dancers perform on the high seas - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Dancers perform on the high seas

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January 24, 2004

Bainbridge --Some South Georgia dancers are getting a big chance to show off their talent in a big way next weekend. Members of the Southwest Georgia Dance Academy, in Moultrie, and the Murkison Academy in Bainbridge were chosen to perform on a Royal Caribbean Cruise.

A first glance at this fancy footwork you may think you've walked onto a Broadway set. But, these 39 young dancers make up the Deep South Dance Troupe. Their dance moves have won them countless awards. Now they've getting ready to perform in front of three-thousand passengers on a luxury cruise ship. "We have a 28 minute show that has to run and be perfectly 28 minutes,"says dance instructor, Lea Hawkins.

Hawkins, is only one part of the dream team that directs the talented troupe. Her co-instructor, Melynda, taught her all she knows. "Oh I had her from the time she was six or seven,"says Melynda Murkerson, owner of Murkerson Dance School. "Then even after she graduated she came home. And she started teaching for me and opened her own school," says Murkerson.

And now after weeks of instruction and thousands of steps later the kids are ready to wow the crowd with every thing from Hip-hop to a taste of Broadway.

"I'm just happy I get to go on a cruise and do what I love and perform for people", says 15 year old dancer,Sheldon Jernigan. For Lea and Melynda letting these kids showcase their talent, while having fun, makes all their hard work worth it.

posted at 7:29PM by scott.hunter@walb.com