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San Diego kids with physical needs find joy through ballet

Posted: 2:35 PM, Aug 29, 2019
Updated: 2019-08-30 11:52:45-04
ballet for me

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) – Dance is a way to lose yourself and escape. For students taking the Ballet for Me! Class at the San Diego Civic Youth Ballet School in Balboa Park, dance is their escape.

“I just love it cause it like brings me joy and it can take me to my happy place,” said Renata Scorza-Muniz.

Renata has been taking regular ballet classes since she was 2 years old. But in February, her life changed.

“It’s stressful, I guess, to be in the hospital,” said Renata.

Renata was diagnosed with cancer, causing her to lose her vision and forcing her out of her regular ballet class.

That’s when she turned to a class called Ballet for Me.

“It’s just so fun to do,” said Renata.

Ballet for Me is a tuition-waved class that is designed for kids with unique physical needs. Each student in the class gets paired up with a mentor to help guide them through each movement.

“It just makes me so happy when I get to see students feel happy and free in class,” said Kerri DeNies instructor and creator of the class.

This dance class helps the kids feel whole again. And all year they rehearse for their moment to shine and perform in front of a packed audience where they feel a little more joy and beam with confidence.