Dixie Arts Conservatory: Phenomenal Students Doing Phenomenal Things

Photo courtesy of Dixie Arts Conservatory
Image courtesy of Dixie Arts Conservatory, St. George News

ST. GEORGE – One dancer has been seen on “So You Think You Can Dance?” Another was accepted to the Odyssey Dance Theater. Another joined a dance company that recently returned from touring China. What do these performers have in common?  All three are former students of the Dixie Arts Conservatory.

“We have phenomenal students doing phenomenal things,” said Maria Vaccaro-Bithell, the Conservatory’s director of dance.

The Dixie Arts Conservatory is a nonprofit organization designed to help instill an appreciation of the arts, primarily musical theater and dance, into the hearts of children and adults.

“We have a well-rounded program,” Vaccaro-Bithell said.

Prospective students are accepted as young as nine-months-old, and up into adulthood. Performers of nearly every age make up the current classes.

For people interested in enrolling themselves or their children into the program, there is the often-asked question, “How much is the tuition?”

Vaccaro-Bithell said that the Conservatory is an “open studio,” meaning that no one would ever be turned away for lack of funds. And while there is a low monthly tuition, that tuition is the only cost that students will have to worry about. There are no additional fees for registration or costumes. Family discounts are also offered. For exact pricing, performers must contact the Conservatory.

As for the programs offered through the Conservatory, they include acting, many types of dance, tumbling, zumba and b-boy/girl (break-dancing) classes.

The Conservatory is also starting up its own “crew,” a group that will include a mix of break-dancing, hip-hop and other dance styles.

“We’re really excited,” Vaccaro-Bithell said about the crew.

When it comes time for recitals, things are done a bit differently at the conservatory. The Conservatory’s version of a dance recital is an all-dance show in which each of the classes can be featured. Theater students will get to show off their talents for acting, singing and dancing in a show held at the end of the semester.

Instructors at the Conservatory are highly trained, Vaccaro-Bithell said. She has extensive experience in the realms of ballet, tap dancing, and hip-hop. She has worked for the Bunker Dance Company in Las Vegas, and has choreographed shows for St. George Musical Theater and Tuacahn High School.

For Vaccaro-Bithell, the part she loves the most about teaching at the Conservatory is seeing the smiles on her students’ faces.

The Dixie Arts Conservatory is located at 200 North 1100 East St. George, Utah. It can be reached at 435-669-3087. Additional information can be found on the Conservatory’s website.

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Copyright St. George News, SaintGeorgeUtah.com LLC, 2011, all rights reserved.

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