Dance for Me

Dance for Me

Mon, 07/21/2014 - 10:00pm - 11:30pm

Pictured: Fifteen-year-old Egor

Credit: POV

A suspenseful coming-of-age story, with a global twist and lots of marvelous dancing, about two passionate teens with uncommon dedication and ambition.

Fifteen-year-old Egor, an only child, is Russian and living with his mother in China while his father serves in the Russian army. Talented and dedicated, Egor is ready to step on to the international stage. He leaves behind home, family, friends, and everything familiar to go to Denmark and move in with Mie and her family. Katrine Philp's Dance for Mepremiering Monday, July 21, 2014 at 10 p.m. on WXXI-TV, paints a touching, dance-filled portrait of two very young people with great ambitions—and challenges—on and off the dance floor.

Mie and Egor are a study in temperamental differences. Mie, also an only child, appears poised, confident, and cheerful beyond her years. Egor, intense and moody, tends to take his mistakes and losses hard. Of course, he has also risked more than Mie by uprooting himself and taking on the challenges of a new environment, culture, and language, in addition to the demands of dancing at a higher level of competition. "I didn't feel like leaving at all," he says at the beginning of Dance for Me. "I felt like dancing." Moreover, Egor must succeed with Mie in order to remain in Denmark. Little wonder, then, that he shows signs of stress.

Dance for Me follows Mie and Egor through their rigorous regimen of practice, rehearsals and competitions, all beautifully filmed to capture the distinct thrills of Latin ballroom dances, from rhumba to paso doble, and the young performers' struggles with everyday things like schoolwork and family dynamics. Living in the same house, Egor and Mie form a brother-sister relationship. Mie's family, dedicated to her dancing career, is supportive of both, knowledgeable about dance and sensitive to Egor's extra challenges.

To youth belong such soaring ambitions—and the possibility that they just may come true. Dance for Me accompanies the two, energized by their newfound bond, on a competitive roller coaster that takes them to the Danish championship, which, astonishingly for a couple competing for the first time, they win. Their next stop is representing Denmark at the European championship in Moscow, where Egor will see his mother for the first time in a year.