Roxboro dance studio celebrates 20th anniversary with no recital

ROXBORO, N.C. (WTVD) -- Christi's Dance Center in Roxboro is celebrating it's 20th anniversary this year.

"We were excited about 20 years in the year 2020," said the dance center's owner, Christi Lappin. "All of that kind of got blown up."

The dance center has more than 300 students and ever since May they put on around 30 dance recitals but this year the season got cut short due to COVID-19.

"This was my biggest graduating class in 20 years," she said. " I had over 30 students that were seniors. I'm really disappointed for them."

"It was extremely disheartening," said senior dance, Kyleigh Burton. "I always imagined I was going to finish out my senior year with a typical recital and competitions and performances and what not but I completely understand that other people's health is way more important than that and I'm very hopeful for the future."

Kyleigh's been a dancer at Christi's Dance Center for the last 15 years and because of her experience there, she's going to East Carolina University this fall to major in dance.

"I look up to my dance teacher Christi Lappin and my fellow dancers," Burton said. "They've just given me this passion and ignited this desire for me to share the art of dance through performing and I want to perform and be on a big stage one day."

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Christi says she's thankful for her students and their families for their support during this time and that she's proud of their graduating seniors.

"I hope that if things do lighten up I don't think we will be able to do a full-blown recital," said Lappin. "Maybe there is some kind of senior showcase that we can still do for them."

"It's definitely taught me to be patient and to really focus on one day at a time," Burton said. "I really have to understand that some things are more important than others. Even though dance is so important to me as a whole and for this country, in this uncertain time right now, frontline workers and essential workers their health and things are important."

Lappin said the biggest expense for families lost right now is the cost of costumes.
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