Local dancers get chance to shine with country star




When Warner Music Nashville recording artist Tegan Marie came to Hartford on Sept. 30, she took a left turn from what most visiting singers do.

Rather than bringing an opening band out on the road with her, she reached out for some local talent to be part of her show.

And since Tegan, 14, is a fan of dance, she decided she wanted to have some local dancers open her show.


So, Plainville’s Dance Xpressions was one of two studios tapped to provide dancers to open for the singer who is responsible for the hits, “Keep It Lit” and “I Know How to Make a Boy Cry.”

Representing Connecticut to this up-and-coming country singer were Dance Xpressions students, Meghan Carroll from Southington, Faith Jones-Pelletier from Plainville, Arianna Montalvo from New Britain, Olivia Webster from Bristol, and Emma Stone from Bristol.

“I was very excited when I was told that I was dancing as the opening act for a national recording artist,” said Emma. “I knew that this was a once in a lifetime opportunity and it could open many doors for me in the future. I was also shocked because I never thought that such an awesome person like Tegan would want me to dance as an opening act for her. Not many people get the chance to do something like this.”

“My reaction when told I was going to dance as an opening act, I was extremely surprised and excited,” said Faith. “There were also some nerves as well.”

“I was extremely excited and honored when I got the news that I would be performing for such a talented singer,” said Arianna.

“I was very excited when I found out I was going to dance as part of Tegan Marie’s opening act at Infinity Hall,” said Olivia. “I was also a little nervous because I was performing a part of my new tap solo.

“Tegan was super supportive when she was watching us practice. It felt amazing to dance for someone so sweet and talented,” said Emma.

“I was so happy that I got to meet her before the show. I liked her energy and her vibe. She was all positive vibes and she was so supportive of all the dancers. She was also extremely humble and sweet,” said Faith.

“It was such an amazing experience meeting Tegan before the show,” said Olivia. “She was so nice. We even friended each other on Snapchat. She watched us practice and made me feel really comfortable about performing.”

“Meeting her was amazing,” said Arianna. “She was such a sweet and humble girl. She was very welcoming and was supportive to all the dancers. It was a pleasure being able to meet her.”

Besides artists like Tegan Marie, the Infinity in Hartford attracts a slew of other national acts.

“I was honored to dance in a theater that gets a lot of big name acts,” said Emma of performing at The Infinity.

“It was super interesting and fun to dance in a theater that had so many big name acts,” said Faith.

“Dancing in a place that so many amazing people have performed in was amazing,” said Arianna. “It was an incredible experience that I’m so thankful for.”

The dancers also gave Tegan’s performance a big thumb’s up.

“I liked her performance a lot,” said Faith. “You were able to enjoy the music with her, dance and just have a good time. Her songs had great lyrics and she is just an amazing performer and singer all around. I am so thankful I was given the opportunity to perform for such an amazing uprising star like Tegan Marie.”

“I love Tegan’s music,” said Meghan. “I am a fan of country music and I had so much fun at the concert listening to her. She is very talented and she is an inspiration to so many young girls. I am so happy and thankful that I got to meet her and see her perform her amazing music. It was such an amazing experience.”

“Her music was amazing,” said Arianna of Tegan Marie. “She is incredibly talented and she gave an amazing, entertaining concert that everyone enjoyed. It was so much fun.”

“Tegan has an incredible voice,” said Olivia “She is an awesome singer and performer. You feel her energy when she’s on stage and it makes you want to get up and dance and sing to her music. I lost my voice cheering for her. I can’t wait for Tegan to come back to Connecticut. That’s a concert I’m definitely going to.”

“Tegan’s music was incredible and her voice is phenomenal,” said Emma.

“I am very grateful for this experience. I had so much fun and I would love to do it again. Thank you Tegan,” said Emma.

Dancers from Dance Xperience in Plainville had a chance to perform as the opening act for the recent concert by country artist Tegan Marie when she performed at the Infinity Hall in Hartford. From the left, Meghan Carroll from Southington, Faith Jones-Pelletier from Plainville, Arianna Montalvo from New Britain, Olivia Webster from Bristol ,and Emma Stone from Bristol. (MIKE CHAIKEN PHOTO)
Country star Tegan Marie, center, watches local dancers from Dance Xperience at the Infinity Hall in Hartford. (MIKE CHAIKEN PHOTO)