By Nancy Huynh
San Jose, Calif. –- Matthew Li, a senior, this year’s Silver Creek’s Choreo Club Co-President, takes us behind the scenes of the dance performances at school, what dance means to him, and what he is like behind the curtains.
According to Li, “Dance is about creating art that requires passion and not just putting moves together, it’s a lot more than that. It’s a piece of art you enjoy, put a lot of thought into and a cool hobby to do with friends.”
Li fell in love with dance at a very young age. After school during fourth and fifth grade, Li would attend South Bay Dance Center where he would learn hip-hop. During his freshman year at Creek, Li’s sister, Madi Li, introduced him to Nonfire, Fanatics and Silver Creek’s first-ever jazz program. At that moment, Li joined Silver Creek’s Choreo Club and T.A.T. Workshop, which stood for Thursdays at Three. T.A.T. Workshop is another program at Creek, which allows any students from Creek or not, to come and dance with no payment needed. He also joined another program that was outside of school called, Syndikidz and was part of the junior team, but sadly disbanded when Covid-19 hit.
As a choreographer, Li starts off picking a song that contains numerous beats, freestyles the dance moves in his head, gets his main ideas out and then fills them up with fuller moves. To teach his members the dance he would block, a term used to assign people to their positions and direct them where they go. Afterward, they would clean up their dance, work on transitions, focus on the details and then perform their piece. This process would take about four to six weeks as they practice Monday through Friday at the student parking lot.
Li has no problem managing his school, dance, and social life because dance became his social life, which led him to meet new people. Since his dance life is at school because of Choreo Club, his dance life doesn’t clash with his school life. Li loves to spend time with his friends and his girlfriend, Telly Do, by eating out and partying. His hobbies contain volleyball, badminton, video games, going to the gym and learning about his new car’s gears.
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