Sometimes homework gets pushed aside, sometimes she doesn’t sleep, but Daphne Bennett always has time for dance.
“It’s pretty much what I do with my life but I love it,” she said. “Dance is my passion all the way. I put it before homework. I put it before sleep. But dance is always there. It’s a whole lot of dance.”
But it’s paid off for the Rigby junior, who has placed in the top five with her jazz solo at every Troyette dance competition this year.
Bennett loves and has studied all styles of dance but she prefers jazz for the technique and the opportunity to perform with personality. She is thrilled to have placed so high in each competition.
“It’s super awesome,” she said. “Especially with being 5A with all the super difficult schools. The Boise schools are a different breed of dancers. It feels like a big accomplishment,” she said.
She currently dances three hours each evening at her studio. The Troyettes have early-morning practices three times a week in two-hour blocks, with another two-and-a-half hour practice one night.
But there’s nothing Bennett would rather do.
She started dancing at age 2 while living in California. When she moved to Idaho the next year, she immediately found a dance studio and resumed her dancing. When she was six she moved to the Front & Center Dance studio owned by the long-time Troyette coach, where she has been ever since.
“So I knew I wanted to be a Troyette,” she said.
Faith Stibal, the current Troyette coach studied at the dance studio with Bennett.
“It has been great to have her as a coach since I already had a relationship with her,” Bennett said. “She had developed a personal relationship with each individual girl. Faith is an amazing coach. She just really knows how to lead us well. You can tell her passion for dance too.”
Stibal was a Troyette for four years and graduated in 2013. She began coaching in 2015.
“She’s often mistaken for another dancer,” Bennett said. “We’ll get on the bus and the driver with ask, ‘where’s your coach?’ We laugh and say, ‘she’s right here.”
Soon Stibal, Bennett, and the rest of the Troyettes will be boarding a bus for state, hoping to continue on this year’s success.
“I feel like we have a good chance,” Bennett said.