“Shining Stars” Dance Program spreads inspiration to Orange County’s Children

“Shining Stars” Dance Program spreads inspiration to Orange County’s Children

IRVINE, Calif. (July 28th, 2016) - Leaping back into action this summer, the “Shining Stars” Dance Organization will hold its 2016 Summer Dance Program from August 15th-20th on the UC Irvine campus. 100 young children will partake in this student and alumni produced program that bridges the gaps between Orange County’s underserved communities and access to the arts in higher educational institutions.

Just as “Shining Stars” accomplished last year in the first ever program of its kind for children ages 5-12 years old, the 2016 program participants will receive a week of physical dance training in jazz, hip hop, tap and ballet in a program that takes place on the UC Irvine campus. They were also introduced to academic ideas and critical issues, such as positive body image, improvisation, dances from other parts of the world, careers in dance, and dance as a subject of study in higher education.

“It was amazing last year to see our 58 children grow as artists in just one short week. We can't wait to see how this year's participants will blossom, especially since we've doubled our student numbers and tripled our number of teachers this time around,” says Irishia Hubbard, the Artistic Director and Co-Founder of  “Shining Stars”.

“Right after the 2015 program’s performance [for the children to showcase their talents to their families], there was a tremendous demand for another program, so we began planning immediately to bring the ‘Shining Stars’ Summer Dance Program back as bigger and better than before,” says Nicole Rivor, Administrator and Co-Founder of “Shining Stars”.

The dynamic management team of “Shining Stars” is comprised of current UCI students from the Claire Trevor School of the Arts Dance Department, Paul Merage Business School, School of Education, School of Humanities with alumna Rosa Garcia. Together with their mentor Associate Professor Sheron Wray, all sharing the same passion for dance and youth engagement, they have shaped a program that is set to become sustainable. The organizers led by Hubbard and Rivor have received funding from UCI’s Claire Trevor School of the Arts, Office of the Vice Chancellor of Student Affairs, and the Undergraduate Research Opportunities Program. They also gained support from several businesses such as JazzXchange, Jordan Taylor Development, Dans La Danse Dancewear, Blaze Pizza, Usbourne Books & More, and the Creation Station dance studio. With the support from these new sponsors, “Shining Stars” mount what they hope to be an even more successful program than last year, benefitting more OC families.

The 2016 “Shining Stars” Summer Dance Program is still accepting applications. Children must be 5-12 years old. If interested, an email should be sent to: ShiningStarsOC@gmail.com.

The management team of “Shining Stars” continues to fundraise to reach their goal of $20,000 for this year’s program beginning August 15th, and a GoFundMe page is live at www.gofundme.com/shiningstarsdance.

IMAGE: 2015 “Shining Stars” program participants and teachers (photo by Akinyola Adabale)

Posted Date: 
July 28, 2016
Contact Information: 


Irishia Hubbard
Artistic Director and Co-Founder
(707) 290-1507

Nicole Rivor
Administrator and Co-Founder
(619) 852-7425

Sheron Wray
Associate Professor and mentor