An Expression of Excellence
Ycats Dance Studio is an embodiment of hard work, commitment, creativity, and stewardship, where dancers are guided by the core values of respect, love, commitment, excellence, and community. A cozy and well-equipped home for dancers, Ycats Dance Studio currently has a membership of nearly 100 dancers, and offers an exceptional dance experience in modern contemporary, jazz, reggae, folkloric, and liturgical dance styles. With their distinctive repertoire, the Ycats Ensemble hosts annual theater productions, and is routinely invited to perform at various events locally and overseas.
THE SPIRIT OF EXCELLENCE
The Ycats Ensemble is well known for stunning performances, creative costumes, inspiring music selections, and an overall excellence driven by their Artistic Director, Stacy-Lee Abrahams. Abrahams shared that her campaign for excellence in dance began in 2007 when she was first introduced to the World Championship of the Performing Arts, in California, USA. “I was amazed by the display of professionalism and passion at the competition; and became inspired to ignite that drive in my dancers back home.” The following year she prepared a team of relatively young and inexperienced dancers who went on to win several gold medals and the 2008 Junior Dance Champion title at the competition.
DANCING WITH PURPOSE
Ycats’ mission is to inspire discipline, self-confidence, and a great love of dance, while furthering God’s work by caring for humanity. The members work to demonstrate Christ’s teaching of love and compassion through their outreach ministry. Each year, the ensemble sponsors more than 100 children from vulnerable communities, orphanages, and places of safety to attend an annual theater production. There, they are treated to refreshments, gifts, and a performance that inspires hope for a brighter future. Additionally, the Ycats dancers and their parents participate in yearlong charitable initiatives for children who are less fortunate.
FUELED BY STEWARDSHIP
Ycats Dance Studio is well supported by its alumnae, the parents who selflessly give of their time to ensure the dancers’ success, and many expert well-wishers. “It’s an absolute joy to work with past members in the Ycats instructor training program, and to contribute to the dancers’ development,” says Racquel Robertson, an instructor who heads the alumnae.
Psychologist Kellie-Ann Brown Campbell, who leads the Parent Support Committee, said the parents are confident in the leadership and direction of the group and that they are always excited to work with the Artistic Director and instructors. Studio Administrator Charmaine Bimmer describes working at Ycats as “a pleasure” and group Secretary Kimari McCalla adds that coordinating the social media activities is an “absolute delight.”
Ycats is keen on fostering collaborations that enhance their mission. Dramatic Praise, a group of talented actors and actresses, partners with Ycats to ensure their message of hope, healing, and restoration is communicated. Expert choreographer and Production Director Tony Henry is committed to enhancing the group’s creative concepts from wherever he is in the world. Theatrical Director Berton Myrie readily volunteers his services to oversee the technical components of the usual exceptional productions.
A team of excellent designers have been outfitting the casts for many years, providing magical experiences for performers and audiences alike. Beats by Chic Make-up Artist Racine Hamilton makes it her duty to offer her help for major events. Graphics extraordinaire Randy Fagan of ER Designs has given over a decade of service to the initiatives undertaken by the Artistic Director and continues to ensure that the Ycats brand is well represented. Philanthropist Natalie Campbell-Osbourne works behind the scenes to coordinate the outreach initiatives for the group, and Spiritual Advisors Tabatha Reece and Reverend Delroy Harris are always ready to offer guidance.
Working with Ycats provides the opportunity to engage a disciplined team of dancers who are motivated, passionate about their work, committed to excellence, dedicated to serving humanity, and not afraid to be great.
One faithful supporter of the group, Mrs. Carmen Myrie, said, “If music is the food of life, then for Stacy-Lee and her dancers, Ycats is the soul of dance.”
Photo Credit: ShaunBattickPhotography