Allonge dedicates dance to Pastor Myrtle

Published 9:36 pm Friday, May 25, 2018

Allonge Dance Academy’s ensemble company plans to perform a dance at Main Street United Methodist Church in memory of the recently deceased Pastor Myrtle Hatcher.

The ensemble consists of seven girls, and they choreographed a dance set to one of Hatcher’s favorite hymns “Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing.”

Some of the girls performing the number knew Hatcher personally, because they are a part of the congregation at Main Street UMC.

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“This is very important to me, because she has done so much for me and my family,” said Anna Grace Towler, 18. “I wasn’t able to go to the funeral, so this is my tribute to her.”

Madie Baker, Molly Brennan, Makayla Snyder, Claire Taliaferro and Katie Ann Blanchard practicing for their memorial dance performance for Pastor Myrtle Hatcher at Allonge Dance Academy.

Allonge Dance Academy Director Amanda Short was the one who brought the idea of doing a memorial performance to the dancers, and then Short gave them the opportunity to choreograph and make decisions about the performance.

Short regularly gives the ensemble opportunities to perform dances that will be meaningful to the community.

“The whole point is not just to perform, but it can give the congregation a healing transition,” Short said. “We want to leave them something beautiful.”

Whether the girls knew Hatcher personally, or just knew who she was, they all believed doing this dance for the community and the Main Street UMC congregation was important.

“It’s very important, because she cared deeply for everyone and she didn’t leave anyone out,” said Madie Baker, 13.

“I didn’t know her personally, but it’s important to celebrate her name and anyone that loved her through the dance,” said Makayla Snyder, 16.

Hatcher regularly watched performances and attended recitals for those at Allonge, and that makes the dance very important for the girls performing.

“She loved the way the girls expressed the love of Christ through dance, and she thought it was amazing,” Susan Towler said. “We miss her very much.”

“She loved young people and sharing the Holy Spirit,” said Claire Taliaferro, 11.

Some of the girls remembered her from attending their recitals.

“This dance is important because she used to come to recitals and this is thanking her for all that she did,” said Molly Brennan, 14.

Anne Gomer, 13, is also part of the ensemble. This ensemble regularly performs in the community in Suffolk.

The girls will be performing the dance at the church during both Sunday services — 8:30 and 11 a.m. — on June 10, and they will also perform the piece during Allonge’s recital at 1 and 5 p.m. June 16 at the Suffolk Center for the Cultural Arts.