Growing up in Menlo Park, Holly Cogan attended small, private elementary and middle schools. A chance dance audition landed her at a big public high school, Menlo-Atherton.
“I knew I wanted to go to a coed high school and was trying to choose between Menlo and M-A,” she recalls. “I heard M-A was having a dance team audition. I’d been dancing a little bit but was really much more a soccer/basketball girl at that point.
“I went to the audition and made the team. It was really spontaneous – and just meant to be!”
Now a senior, Holly has been captain of the M-A Dance Team for the past two years. The team is having its annual show, which also serves as its major fundraiser, on Saturday, Feb. 5 at 6:00 pm at the Menlo-Atherton Performing Arts Center. The audience will be treated to a variety of dance styles – hip hop, jazz, lyrical and ballet.
“Each class – sophomore, junior, senior – presents part of the program,” Holly says. “There are solos, duos, and big group numbers. It’s a combination performance of M-A’s team and people who take classes from our coach, Nona Ybarra, at her Captivating Dance studio on Menalto Ave.”
Holly hopes to continue with dance when she goes off to college in the fall. “Right now I’m auditioning with schools, including UCLA, SMU and Chapman. I’m thinking of majoring in communications, with a minor in dance. I love dance but know that it’s not a long term career.
“But dance is really my passion. I can’t live without it! I really want to go somewhere that offers dance. Knowing there’s a whole new chapter in my life ahead is all very exciting!”
Tickets for the Dance Team show are $10 for adults and $5 for students. They’ll be available at the door the day of performance (doors open at 5:30 pm) or by emailing Kristin Gananian: gananian[at]pacbell.net. Proceeds from the performance help underwrite scholarships, team uniforms, camps and competition expenses.