Drawn into dance

Local dance program uses social media to help their program grow


Joslyn Renee

Junior Lillian Lee became an ambassador for KCJDI in 2016, the first year it was open.

Many people’s everyday choices are heavily influenced by what they see on social media which two BVNW students have used to their advantage to promote a passion of theirs.
Senior, Abbey Griffin, is a student and ambassador at Kansas City Jazz Dance Intensive. Griffin said since starting at the intensive in 2017, she has felt she has grown as a dancer and as a person.
“I thought it was a great way to meet other dancers in the community. That is really what drew me into becoming an ambassador,” Griffin said. “All the ambassadors get really cool opportunities aside from just the normal intensive”.
Junior Lillian Li said her experience being an ambassador the first year KCJDI was open in 2016 was different than Griffins but she still shares the same positive feelings towards the program.
“People who dance for a living come into KCJDI and you learn a lot,” Li said. “I learned from them and from the people who also go there. They are all really good dancers. After the first year I learned how to be more confident in myself as a dancer”.
Being an ambassador can consist of many different things but having a good social media presence is the most important part, Griffin and Li said.
“As an ambassador we are supposed to help promote,” Griffin said. “We are expected to have a presence on social media so that we can promote [KCJDI]. They kind of expect us to post and repost what they have at least once a week. We also filmed a video shoot this year”.
Aside from getting to share something she is passionate about on social media, Griffin said being an ambassador allowed her to become friends with people she otherwise would not have known. Griffin said the fact that she is from a non competitive studio makes this experience even better.
“I just love meeting so many new people,” Griffin said. “I think I am one of the oldest of the ambassadors so I think it’s interesting to see people from different studios and of different ages coming together. It’s just very diverse”.
Her eagerness to meet new people, learn and keep dancing is something that pushed her to apply for the ambassador program, Griffin said. Creative director and founder of KCJDI, Bryant Williams said these same qualities are what made Griffin the perfect candidate for the program.
After knowing Griffin for 7 years, Williams said he knows she has a deep rooted passion for dance and jazz in general.
“Abbey is a hard worker,” Williams said. “She is very passionate about dance. It is always great to find people who really love what they are doing and can really get behind it and Abbey is a quintessential candidate for that”.