Studio K Colorguard and Dance, a competitive performance group under the direction of Katie Harris, put on a Christmas recital at a packed Merced Theatre on Dec. 15. The dancers performed twice, once in the afternoon and again in the evening.
Groups of dancers in gorgeous brightly-colored costumes took control of the stage with energy and grace, performing to lively holiday tunes such as “I Saw Mommy Kissing Santa Claus,” “All I Want for Christmas Is You,” “Santa Baby,” “Carol of the Bells,” “Jingle Bells,” and “You’re a Mean One, Mr. Grinch.”
In one routine, the Grinch stole the little ones’ Christmas presents. But the plucky kids attacked the Grinch. Then they took back their gifts triumphantly.
In another routine, Julianna Davey beautifully danced the part of Elsa, a character in the movie “Disney Frozen 2″.
Davey has been involved dancing at Studio K since the time she was in Color Guard at Weaver School. She now attends Fresno State University where she is involved in Color Guard.
Another highlight was the female students’ dance with their fathers during intermission.
Katie Harris told the Times, “I thought it would be a super cute idea to have fathers dance with their daughters. It gives the girls the opportunity to have those special memories. I kept the steps simple. Now, it’s a tradition everyone loves.”
The emcee for the show was Ken Harris, Katie’s father.
At the conclusion, he announced, “From five years ago, four students, to what it is today — it’s a tribute to Katie Harris! I’m really proud of her.”
Marissa Grijalva, Studio K staff member and dancer, told the Times, “Studio K started in 2015. We do contemporary dance, lyrical, tap, and ballet, and we add in color guard when we can.
“Our ages range from 2 to 20. We currently have 115 students. We have four boys, ages 9, 15, 16 and 20.
“I’m in charge of the Dolls. The other groups are the Minis, Kuties, Divas, Diamonds, Sapphires, Roses, Rebels, Royals and a co-ed team, Beauties and Gents. We also have Junior Gents. Our competition teams are the groups from Roses to Gents.
“One of the competition groups, Rebels, is a hip-hop group. But every single class is required to know all the dance forms we teach.
“Katie Harris is the owner and director. She does all the work by herself, with three staff members. She gives us the choreography and she teaches it, and then we work on it.
“Our main thing is recitals. Every year, we perform a summer recital and a Christmas recital.”
When asked what the dancers do with their abilities after they leave the studio, Grijalva said, “A lot of girls express that they want to continue on with dance, and some girls have auditioned for commercials and said Studio K was a big factor.
“One of our students went on to be part of Fresno State Color Guard, and another took Arts at San Francisco State University.
“Our main dancer went on to Grand Canyon University in Arizona to study ballet, and I’m hoping to audition for Disney.”
Studio K is located at 1521 W. Main Street in Merced. For further information about the Studio K Colorguard and Dance, those interested can call (209) 381-0500.