Pauls Valley, OK, Pauls Valley Democrat

Features

November 8, 2011

Dancing provides lessons, career path

Noteworthy Neighbor

Pauls Valley, Oklahoma — There has always been a degree of difficulty in achieving anyone’s version of the American Dream and for Jordy Morales, it literally has come one step at a time.

Not only was Morales able to take her love of dancing and turn it into a career, she’s also managed to do so without having to leave her home town of Pauls Valley. Her passion for all things moving to the beat can be traced back to her own childhood, though for the past few years has been realized as a children’s instructor at The Dance Station near downtown.

“I got to do what I always dreamed of doing and in this small little town,” said Morales, who graduated from Pauls Valley High School in 2009. “I wouldn’t do it anywhere else.”

Morales, 21, first took dancing lessons when she was around six, but quit for a while before going full throttle in high school through activities like the pom squad. She actually took lessons through Dance Station owner Devin Butts before becoming a student teacher and working now three days a week.

The business itself has been around for around 25 years, but has moved to several locations since Butts and Sharon Oakley helped start business in the former Armory in Wacker park. Morales teaches six different classes starting at 3:30 p.m. including tap/ballet to three to four year olds as well as pom or jazz dance to 6-10 year old kids and said the best thing is how much can be expressed through the art.

When Morales isn’t busy passing on skills to future stars, she is a stay at home mom with her one-and-a-half-year-old daughter Lili Morales. Already well past the learning to walk stage, she often enjoys either watching mom instruct or showing off her own moves.

“I love watching them learn new things,” said Morales, who also finds joy in making girly related items for sale from tutus to wearable decorations. “They’ve learned something so simple, so amazing.”

However, Morales job is made a little bit easier with the help of her own student instructor, Tiffany Burnett, who comes in and helps with all of her instruction. Watch one of the lessons with the class and it only helps having the added experience with dancers at different skill levels.

Morales also enjoys watching the results of the hours invested, all after they get out of school, through events like dance competitions, performing for Relay for Life and the upcoming Christmas play December 1st and 4th at the PV High School Auditorium. She said just as much sacrifice is needed from the parents who help bring the kids to practice and encourage them along.

In the end, Morales plans to take on this challenge for the long haul, though if she is ever inclined to do so she can finish pursuing a degree in education with about a year and a half of credits taken. For the moment, the 12 or so in each class satisfies her desire to teach and stay in town where she feels there will be no shortage of potential for years to come.

“Without the parents you couldn’t put anything together,” said Morales. “It’s pretty good to show the town what we’re learning... It’s really all about having fun and enjoying yourself.”

Devin or the other instructors can be reached at 405-238-0717.

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