This family is full of pizzazz |

This family is full of pizzazz

JOHN GARDNERGlenwood Springs, CO Colorado
Post Independent/John Gardner

RIFLE – The Churchills of Rifle are all show.Lynn Churchill stood in the shadows in the back of the large, open room of the Lovell building at the United Methodist Presbyterian Church.Her eyes fixed intently on four dancers.Her two young sons dressed in black from head to toe, connected to her two young daughters in long white gowns. Their hair, long and straight, seems tailored perfectly to match the gowns. Together the siblings, the Churchill Family dancers performed the “Dark Waltz,” choreographed by none other than themselves.Dad, Ted, sat motionless, his smile noticeable in the dim light, his eyes beaming with pride.Talent comes in many forms. For the Churchill family, it comes in the form of these four unique children.

Michael, 19, the oldest, is a fantastic dancer, Lynn said. It’s his favorite part of being in the Pizzazz Players, a group that Lynn started about six years ago to help her kids, and others in the valley, explore the world of the performing arts. In that time, the Pizzazz Players have come a long way.And so has each of her kids.”We just do it because we enjoy it,” Michael said.The program started with about eight kids, these four included, and has grown to 31 kids from around the valley.”It’s really open to kids who want to expand their performing arts abilities,” Lynn said. “There are all my adopted children.”Landon, 17, grew up watching performance arts shows with the rest of his family. That’s where he got the itch to perform. He and his mother get the inspiration for the Pizzazz Players Variety show remembering back to those shows that they’ve seen before.

“I don’t really know where the inspiration comes from,” Landon said. “We would always go watch different shows like at Disney World, those shows are awesome. We just like to perform.”Michael said it’s his mother and Landon who really organize and come up with the ideas behind the performances. You can see it in the way Landon takes command of the room wherever he is. He’s easy to spot at nearly six feet tall, with red hair and a charismatic smile – a true performer.Sisters Jordon, Landon’s twin, and Taylor 15, are both accomplished dancers and singers, Lynn said. It’s apparent when you see them perform the dances they themselves have choreographed.Together, they’re like a sort of “Partridge Family” meets “School of Rock” minus Jack Black and Donnie Bonaduce. They choreograph dances, come up with skits, play musical instruments and sing. Landon directs the majority of the show while Michael runs the technical equipment, including lights, audio and disc jockeys, between dance numbers.The Pizzazz Players perform four or five shows a year, Lynn said. They’ve done private shows and even performed their fifth annual variety show at the church this week. Lynn said each year the show gets bigger and better.”It’s a lot of fun,” Lynn said. “And the people really enjoy them.”

A lot of heart for a family that’s all show.Contact John Gardner: 384-9114jgardner@postindependent.comPost Independent, Glenwood Springs, Colorado CO

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