Allison Whitbey

 As I look back on the time I spent at CPAC I don’t think there is anything I could say I regretted. CPAC has always been a place of comfort for me where I always felt welcomed, not only is the staff incredible, so is the team itself, I don’t think I could ask for a better studio. My brother joined CPAC a year before me so I have always felt like I could only watch from a far and when I decided to audition for CPAC, I couldn’t be happier. when I joined in seventh grade I was nervous and scared, but that fear immediately left as I met Jen Lee and new friends. All these people have helped push me to be a better person and dancer throughout my six years of being here.

     As I continue throughout my journey, my number one critique from teachers and judges was to work on my confidence, and I think that going into senior year I have improved on that. I used to be so nervous to perform on stage, but now I feel so much more comfortable. I really believe CPAC has helped me improve on all of this including technique and commitment.

      I have learned to grow more appreciative of all the opportunities I have been given. I know in the future, when I look back at the time I have spent in Columbia Performing Arts Centre, I will forever be grateful for all the help This amazing team has given me. Columbia Performing Arts Centre has always, and will forever be my second family. It’s crazy that this is going to be my last year performing with my family and I would say that I can’t believe I am leaving CPAC but that’s not true because I will forever be a part of this community.

     Thank you Jen for always being there for me and my teammates, there’s a special spot for you in my heart. I will never forget the first time I met you when I wasn’t on the team yet and you gave me a big hug and kiss after I performed my solo, that’s when I knew CPAC was the place for me. Jen always makes sure I know that I can tell her anything. I’m so so thankful and blessed that you are our Director throughout my CPAC Journey, I couldn’t love you enough. I honestly don’t know what I would do without you and I am excited to keep in touch with you on my adventure’s to college and through life.

      Thank you Tessa for supporting me throughout my journey of being a dancer, and for always pushing me to continue to grow. As I’ve become a senior I feel like I can fully understand how much you have done and cared for me. There is no amount of time that I could’ve spent with you that I could’ve called enough but I’m glad for the years I got. I will never forget our morning weekend rehearsals that were so nostalgic, we would always end up having a good time! Of course, thank you for choreographing my first solo at CPAC, It was such an honor, and I loved the Choreo! You are such an amazing person, and I will always love and remember you!!

       Thank you Jordan for trusting us with your amazing choreography! I have enjoyed every dance you have given me and I will really miss performing them, I always found your style so amazing. Sur La Place, my sophomore solo, will forever be one of my favorites, and every time I look back on it, I get more and more grateful that you trusted me with that piece. I am so blessed for having such a hard-working teacher in our building and I hope you know how appreciative I am. CPAC wouldn’t be CPAC without you and i’m always so blown away by all your dances! I’ll miss your Jazz classes, Love you!!!

        Thank you Kristen for really pushing me and helping me work on my technique. I can really tell I have improved my ballet skills sense taking your classes. You are one of the most caring souls, you always ask about me and my family and you always want me to get better. You are so talented and I’m always amazed that I get to have you as my teacher. You always light up the room like when you showed up to our andrew shoot and immediately changed our moods. When you are watching me dance, I always know I am loved and someone has my back! Thank you so much again, and I’ll make sure to work on that passé when I’m gone!! Love you!!

       Thank you Chris for always being so supportive and helping me with tap and other challenges, even my solo! I feel like he also always has your back, and he will, No matter what, tell you the truth. Thank you for pushing me to be better and laughing at my jokes. You have really helped me learn what it means to be a responsible dancer! Chris is such an amazing tapper and I would love to be at his level some day! Love you!!

       Thank you christy, even though I’ve only ever had pre-pointe with you, I feel like you have always cared for me and our team! You really helped me to prepare for pointe and I’m always so grateful I had you! Some of my favorite memories is seeing you with you’re kids, they’re so cute!! I hope they grow up to be as amazing as you!! Lots of love!!

       Thank you Michelle, I wish I got to see you more but I’m grateful for the time I got. You have always been so helpful and such a great teacher, I will never forget that. I miss taking extra classes with you, they where honestly some of the most enjoyable classes i’ve had! I truly hope we can stay in touch!! I love you!!

        Thank you costume shop for all the amazing costumes! I have no idea how you do it, you all are so talented and creative. I remembered trying to sew for the first time and that really made me appreciate all that you do for us. I hope you know your incredible hard-work does not go unnoticed. On top of them being so talented, they are also amazing, cool, caring people. I love getting to talk to them on my spare time, they always make us feel amazing! Love you all!!

       Of course thank you so much to my whole family for supporting me! Thank you Connor for welcoming me into CPAC and helping me become the dancer I am now, you are so supportive and I’m so grateful to have you. Thank you Mom for helping me with my dances back at home and caring so much! All of you corrections really helped me improve! Thank you Dad for being supportive and generous when it comes to helping me with dance. Thanks for being such an amazing Dad! Thank you Jordan for helping me out by driving me around when I was younger and even now when we went to Massachusetts and Texas for the CLI and Dash intensives! And thank you grandma for always watching and supporting me throughout these years, I always know I can go to you if I need help! I love you all so much!

         Last but not least, a huge HUGE thank you to Nancy Laurie, our amazing studio owner, for everything! None of this would ever be possible without her help and her love for the Arts. I don’t believe you could ever find a more generous and loving person. She is so kind hearted, and I will always be grateful for everything she has given me and my family. I can’t even put into words how much love I have for Nancy. Her generosity is something you cant compare! Once again, thank you for everything and I love you so so much!!

    CPAC has always been there for me even as I went through hardships or good times. I always knew I could rely on CPAC and its staff and students to be there for me. If I were to tell the underclassmen anything it would be to soak it all up because it all goes away, in a blink of an eye. I joined in 2018 and if there where one thing I would ask for would be more time but of course I’m more than happy with what I got.

       With all that said, I’m so thankful for the time I got to spend with this amazing team and of course… CHAKA!!!