Cora Beth Taylor was diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy at 15 months old. After receiving this diagnosis, her parents dove right into research and resources to access the most appropriate equipment and therapies to meet Cora’s needs and make her as functional as possible while she grew and developed.
Throughout this process, her parents began to look for ideas of activities that Cora Beth could participate in that would have therapeutic benefits, but not seem like work to her because they were fun activities. One such activity was dance. When Cora Beth was around the age of 3 years old, her parents began calling dance studios looking for someone who would work with and teach dance to a child with Cerebral Palsy. Not finding anyone willing to do this, they called the OCU School of Dance program and asked if they had any ideas or suggestions.
The individual answering the phone said they did not know of any such programs for their daughter to participate in, but they knew of a young woman who had graduated from the dance program whose passion was for teaching dance to students with special needs. From that referral, her parents were able to get in touch with Shannon Wrights, who was very excited for the opportunity to work with Cora Beth.
Shannon, who is visually impaired, received her degree from OCU in Dance Management and has always had the dream of developing a dance program where special needs and neurotypical students would take classes and perform side by side. Cora Beth thrived under Shannon’s teaching and gained increased self-confidence and ease of movement. Over the next 10 years, more special needs individuals wanting the opportunity to dance were referred to Shannon. She spent several years teaching neurotypical and special needs students from a room in her own home specially designed as a dance studio. As more and more students became interested in taking classes from her, she eventually outgrew this space. In August, 2017, she moved into a new studio space located in north Oklahoma City. The Aspiring Attitudes Dance Studio continues to grow and gain new students every month.
Cora Beth is a talented singer and decided to co-write a song called “Brave to Live”, which talks about the power that one word has to change a life. This single was released in March, 2019. Along with the release of this single, a desire to create a music video to accompany it was born. Cora Beth wanted dancers from the Aspiring Attitudes Dance Studio to participate in this video. The video was shot in downtown Oklahoma City at the Myriad Gardens in May, 2019.
The video was released on Sunday, August 25, 2019.
In conjunction with the release, Cora Beth performed her song live at our annual
"End of Summer Showcase Spectacular" and was accompanied by the
Aspiring Attitudes dancers who appeared in the video.