Isa Sanson-Frey radiates on both court and stage
By Bella Crayton, Co-Copy Editor
Isa Sanson-Frey may be only a freshman, but she’s already well known in the community for both dance and volleyball, landing lead roles in local dance productions and gaining a varsity spot in her first year on the high school’s volleyball team.
Sanson-Frey has been dancing for nine years, becoming a stand-out performer at the Vashon Dance Academy (VDA). Her past roles have included Jiminy Cricket in “Pinocchio,” Jane Banks in “Mary Poppins,” and Snow White in “Snow White.”
Sanson-Frey’s dancing consumes large amounts of time from her weekly schedule, but she also makes room for another of her passions: volleyball.
“I focus mostly on dance, but I really, really enjoy volleyball while the season is going,” Sanson-Frey said.
Sanson-Frey began playing volleyball in sixth grade and continued the following season as a seventh-grader. Though an injury sidelined her in eighth grade, Sanson-Frey rejoined volleyball this season as a freshman.
At the very end of this season, Sanson-Frey made it onto the varsity team — a rare accomplishment for a freshman.
Finding time between school and sports can be a challenge for Sanson-Frey.
“The hardest thing is balancing schoolwork with volleyball and dance, and sneaking in homework whenever I can,” Sanson-Frey said.
Sanson-Frey’s teachers are understanding of her busy schedule.
“As long as I communicate with [my teachers,] it usually works out,” she said.
Both Sanson-Frey’s teachers and mentors recognize and appreciate her work ethic.
“She’s a hard worker, which is great. She is very coachable, and she’s a good listener, which always translates well,” head volleyball coach Kara Sears said. “She has improved a lot over the course of the year, and we’re excited to watch her improve.”
Sanson-Frey also contributes to the team through her positive attitude.
“She’s a great leader,” Sears said. “She has a really good on-court presence and is a pretty calm player.”
Sanson-Frey’s dance teacher Cheryl Krown expresses similar approval.
“Our dance studio is a family, and each dancer contributes in their own, special way to the enrichment of our family,” Krown said. “Isa is enthusiastic about all of the dancers’ progress, from the younger ones to the peers in her own classes. She is always very supportive and excited about everyone’s achievements and growth.”
Sanson-Frey’s teammates are also grateful to have her as an ally, whether on the court or stage.
“She’s always really energetic on the court,” freshman volleyball player Iris Bordman said. “She’s always ready to play and get other people hyped up to play”
Sanson-Frey is seen as a positive force in every community she’s a part of.
“She’s really supportive of everyone else, and she always has a super good attitude and she just seems excited to be in class,” VDA junior Hannah Spranger said.
Sanson-Frey’s hard work and good attitude paid off over the summer: she auditioned for and was accepted into a three-week summer dance lab at Whitman College. There, Sanson-Frey was challenged by her instructors to go beyond her abilities.
“[The experience was] really tough but really beneficial in the end,” Sanson-Frey said. “I think it improved my skill[s] a lot, so I’m excited to go back for the three-week program again this summer.”
But as much as Sanson-Frey enjoys volleyball and dance, she doesn’t see pursuing either as an occupation.
“I hope to bring [dance] into my future career, but I don’t think it’ll be my main focus,” she said.
Instead, she hopes to follow acting, another of her interests. While she is not yet certain about her path forward, Sanson-Frey is still excited to see where her passions take her.