Dancers in quarantine trade the studio for Zoom meetings

As quarantine continues, dancers — like many others — use applications like Zoom to reconnect with their teams and continue pursuing their hobby. Though public performances and in-studio rehearsals may be impossible, they have been able to keep doing what they love from the comfort of their own homes.

Brianna Garcia, 19, is a member of the FIU Color Guard. She has participated in dance workshops hosted on Zoom to continue training and maintain a connection with her teammates. 

“Our dance instructor scheduled the [Zoom] meeting weeks in advance and anyone that was interested was able to sign up,” Garcia said. “When we had our first workshop, we all felt so excited to see each other again, even if it was just through our screens.” 

Though she is unable to rehearse with her team in person, Garcia said she felt motivated to improve during the quarantine. Even so, the dancer explained that practicing on her own could never compare to rehearsing with her team.  

“I learn from and get inspired by my teammates every day,” Garcia said. “We feed off of each other’s energy, and when I am on my own, I cannot have that. With the Zoom meetings, we get a chance to reconnect and dance together, even if it’s different from the actual thing.” 

Garcia mentioned that though they might experience some technical difficulties such as video lagging and connection issues, the overall experience has been positive.

“The workshops are the closest thing to a real dance class we could have while in quarantine,” Garcia said. “Watching all of us dancing in little squares on my computer screen makes me feel happy that we could at least find a way to dance together.” 

Princesse Rossignol, 21, is an instructor and coordinator for local dance team Unit 305, who has continued to train by utilizing Zoom to host dance workshops for her team. 

“Without the dance community, I just felt really isolated,” Rossignol said. “I definitely miss that sense of community and support in real life.”

Rossignol said that the team has only hosted two dance workshops so far, but she felt they had a positive impact on her as she missed her teammates and had difficulty finding the will to dance on her own.

“The experience has been good because it keeps us dancing,” she said. “It makes me feel like I’m not just sitting here doing nothing.”

Matti Khan, 20, is a self-taught dancer and member of a non-competitive performance team who has taken this quarantine as an opportunity to improve on her dancing abilities. 

“The good thing is knowing that even though we can’t practice together, at least the team is safer at home,” Khan said. “The gloomy feelings come from missing them and not getting to see each other face-to-face.”

Khan explained that her dance team has not held a workshop through Zoom yet, but after seeing the success of other dancers on social media who have taught their own virtual classes, they are strongly considering hosting one themselves in the near future. 

“We just want to keep dancing and challenging ourselves to stay motivated,” she said. “We all miss that happy feeling when we perform together, but thankfully, not even the quarantine can stop us from doing what we love.”

Elizabeth Afre is a junior at Florida International University majoring in journalism. She enjoys reading, traveling and writing about music and entertainment.