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Show & Tell: Shelley Tees of ‘Spirit of the Dance,”Dancing Queen’

Q: When did you start dancing?

A: I started dancing when I was 2. … Then, when I was 10, I went to a performing arts school, where I used to do (academics) three days a week and two days a week doing drama, singing and, of course, dancing.

Q: Were you already thinking of a career at that point?

A: Probably more at the time, I was, like, "Oh, I get to dance twice a week and I don’t have to do school!" At that age, you don’t really know. And I was doing little commercials here and there and that kind of thing.

Q: Did you have any background in Irish dance when you joined "Spirit of the Dance"?

A: I did a lot of tap, but I had never done Irish dancing.

Q: What was the most difficult part?

A: Keeping your arms still. It’s just your feet moving, and moving them very quickly, and your feet are turned out. With tap, you’re parallel.

Q: Since then, you’ve toured all over. How did you get to the United States?

A: I was in Europe, and they called me up and said, "How would you like to go to America?" I was, like, "Yeah, I’d love to. I’d never been to America," and I went to Reno. … I loved it.

Q: What was your biggest surprise about America?

A: The American accent. And, oh my, the portions are huge (laughs).

Q: Eventually, you moved to Branson (Mo.)?

A: I loved it there, so much that I just kept renewing my contract there every year. … It’s a really pretty place, really picturesque, and everyone’s nice and friendly. My mother and dad live there now.

Q: And, in February, you moved to Las Vegas for "Spirit of the Dance" and "Dancing Queen" (at New York-New York).

A: I’d never done "Dancing Queen" before, and I love doing that show. It’s completely different. … And I did a U.K. tour for a little bit last year (of "Spirit") but I haven’t done it for a long time, so it’s nice to do the show again.

Q: You perform both shows every night?

A: It’s so nice, because these are hour shows, and I’m used to two-hour shows in Branson. We do "Spirit" at 6 and then at 8 we do "Dancing Queen."

Q: It must be fun to dance in such different styles each night.

A: ("Dancing Queen") is more of a fun show. With "Spirit of the Dance," everybody is just, "Wow. Their feet move so fast." It’s something different than they’re used to seeing.

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