Tahoe ballet workshops to be conducted by choreographer of new television drama | SierraSun.com

Tahoe ballet workshops to be conducted by choreographer of new television drama

Linda Bottjer
Lake Tahoe Action

Courtesy imageValerie Salgado will conduct contemporary jazz dance workshops at Tahoe Youth Ballet in Tahoe City, Dec. 19-22.

TAHOE CITY, Calif. and#8212; Valerie Salgado not only teaches lessons in jazz dancing, but also how to turn one’s passions and dreams into reality.

Her stories and skills will be shared with workshops Dec 19-22 at the Tahoe Youth Ballet in Tahoe City.

The Southern Californian discovered dance at a young age and fell in love with the more physical demands of a jazz competition team.

Her love of jazz was deeply rooted.

and#8220;I was once given a bear ballet sweater and refused to wear it,and#8221; she said. and#8220;I am a jazz dancer.and#8221;

Her drive and determination to dance was recognized by her mother, who advised her at age 9 to think toward the future and expand her repertoire by adding the graceful movements of ballet.

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Like many have done for decades, Salgado continued dance through high school and college.

As graduation from UC Irvine loomed, she pragmatically looked where dance was taking her.

and#8220;Irvine taught me a lot, but I was still lacking lessons on how to do it as a career,” she said.

New York City is a Mecca for any dancer.

In a step she compares to the iconic Mary Tyler Moore television show, she arrived in the canyons of Manhattan armed with her suitcases and fueled by youthful hopes.

She readily admits it was not easy.

Having a belief in herself meant accepting her body type and#8212; self-described as and#8220;very short and strongand#8221; and#8212; was best equipped for jazz. It also allowed her to be on the constant search for new opportunities.

She joined several dance companies, and as with any professional is always honing her craft with constant classes.

At one she met Joshua Bergasse, a choreographer who asked her to assist him with his classes at the Broadway Dance Company. After almost half a decade into their professional relationship, the two have entered a new phase in their careers.

and#8220;Smash,and#8221; a new television drama about the highlights and heartbreaks of a Broadway musical, will premiere on NBC in February 2012. Produced by Academy Award-winner Steven Spielberg, the series will star Angelica Huston and Debra Messing of and#8220;Will and Grace.and#8221;

Another class brought her in contact with TYB’s Executive Director Christin Hanna and the invitation to come to Lake Tahoe.

Salgado admitted luck is an important component to one’s success.