Dance Feature

BEAVERTON – This weeks featured dancer is Brenna McKimmy a senior at Beaverton High School. Brenna has been dancing since she was three years old. She got her start at the Midland Community Center before moving to the Gail Wildfong School of Dance in Gladwin. After several years of combo and Jazz classes she was able to join the dance team in sixth grade. 

Due to the pandemic most of our interviews are done over the phone. Without talking face-to-face it is sometimes hard to gauge the reaction to my questions. There was no question with Brenna.

When she mentioned the dance team her tone of voice changed. It was easy for me to imagine that she had a smile on her face. It was obvious how much dance means to her. She described dance as a “mental outlet.” She went on to say, “we are all friends and support each other. At dance you don’t have to worry about anything. You can just do your thing, dance your dance and have fun. After six hours of classes its great to go to dance and take a mental break from reality.”

While she competes in several different styles of dance Hip-Hop is her favorite. “I’ve done it for a long time, probably five years,” she said. “I like how upbeat it is, and how you can have your own style.” She went on to explain, “with Hip-Hop you can express yourself more.” Hip-Hop is not bound by some of the conventions that are found in other styles of dance such as Ballet and Jazz. “Hip-Hop allows you to pick a song that fits your personality.”

McKimmy is also part of the Jazz, Grads Lyrical, Modern and Tap teams. She also does a solo dance and a Tap Duet with her younger sister, Darby.

“Tap is about sound and technique,” she said. “It is really hard. We are taking classes with Miss Adrienne and it has taken a long time for our team to get to where it is now. We have become very together and precise.”

“It is really exciting that my sister and I are able to do a duet this year,” she said. They dance to the song Home by Edward Sharpe and the Magnetic Zeros. “It’s very sentimental to both of us. We sing it together a lot so it’s very touching to be able to dance to one of our favorite songs.”

It’s easy to see why Brenna needs an escape like dance. She is an extremely busy person. Along with dance she rides in Equestrian competitions and shows Ranch Horses. McKimmy has also participated in 4H showing horses and pigs at the Gladwin County Fair for ten and nine years respectively. She is also a member of the National Honor Society at Beaverton High School holding the position of Parliamentarian.

She was also this year’s winner of the Kristina Rose Garafalo Memorial Scholarship given in honor of the former dancer from Gladwin. “Dancing with her was a huge honor,” she said. “Receiving the scholarship meant the world to me.”

Next year Brenna will be attending Saginaw Valley State Universtiy where she will study General Business with a minor in Agricultural Science. This seems fitting for the daughter of Kristen and Matt McKimmy the owners of McKimmy Ag Services. While it is to early to make definite plans she hopes to work for a large Agricultural company after graduation and maybe some day return to her parents business. 

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