Local Dance Teacher Celebrates 25 Years Of Business

What started out as a hobby turned into a career for Kelli Dickens.

"We try very very hard to entertain the young to the old to the unprofessional to the professional," said Dickens.

For years, she's shared what seems so natural so freely with many.

"I started with 30 now I have over 500. It's fun seeing how the studio grew, seen how we started at the Biloxi Community Center, a wonderful place, but now we're at the Coliseum at the main arena," said Dickens.

But it's not just about Kelli.

"These children see what it's about. They see what it's like to be on that stage, when they go to see Broadway shows they know the feel of what it takes to be on a stage like that," said Dickens.

Right now, they are rehearsing for their weekend show that will feature more than 500 coast children.

In her 25 years, Ms. Kelli has touched the lives of over 10,000 children.

"Its been amazing. It's fun to touch so many people life, actually in our show we are going to have an alumni dance, so that's great. I have people that have been with me since for twenty-five and I'm actually teaching their children. And some have gone on to stardom. Some of my children have actually went off to be Broadway. I have Shana Steal who got a Tony Award for "Hairspray", she's a recording artist. I have people who are in Vegas dancing. My son is doing commercials with Brian McKnight, so it's quite exciting to see them continue their dance training or their careers," said Dickens.

A career she says keeps them feeling active and has them swinging with the stars.

Princess and the Pauper is this Sunday at 7 p.m. at the Coast Coliseum. Admission is free.