written by Emily Buckley, editor in chief
Becky Erickson, the reigning Mrs. Cache Valley, is a busy wife, mother of three, and professional ballet dancer and instructor, teaching regularly in Cache Valley at the Cache Valley School of Ballet and Dance Illusion, and also in master classes around the country and at the Happy Feet Ballet and Performing Arts School in Domincial, Costa Rica.
She has performed for many civic and professional dance industries, including the Cache Valley Civic Ballet, the Cache Community Theatre, Valley Dance Ensemble, nationally on So You Think You Can Dance, and Inishfree Irish Dance, and was featured on the cover of the book Dance Across the USA, by Jonathan Givens, which features dancers photographed in National Parks across the United States.
“I have been teaching kids for 18 years,” said Becky. “I consider it my job to not only train girls proper ballet technique, but to also train them to be happy, confident women. So, when the opportunity came for me to represent Cache Valley, I felt like it was a way I could share this message I feel so strongly about.”
Becky has worked with ballet dancers of all ages, but her classes always end the same way: with an affirmation. “I have the little girls thank their legs for what they allow them to do and say, ‘I love ballet!’, and I have the older girls look into the mirror and say, ‘I am beautiful.’”
Becky says she has seen amazing transformations in the young women she works with. “I help them learn to appreciate themselves and really come to believe that they are beautiful; they can’t afford negative thoughts about themselves, so I try to help them replace the negative with positive.”
It is important to understand that the beauty Becky is talking about is not skin deep. “I’m not talking about superficial beauty,” she said. “I am talking about the beauty that shines through when they are kind and respect themselves and others.”
Becky believes in this mission so much that she is in the process of publishing a book: What Makes You Truly Beautiful. Each chapter is defined by a letter of the word “beautiful” to create an acrostic poem of sorts:
BELIEVE YOU ARE SPECIAL
ATTITUDE OF GRATITUDE
THINK OF OTHERS FIRST
LOVER OF BEAUTY
“It is a short read that I hope inspires people, kids and parents alike,” Becky said. “The world says beauty has to do with skin-deep features, but real beauty comes from character, experiences, and what we do with those experiences.”
Becky will compete in the Mrs. Utah America Pageant March 15 and 16 in Ogden. “The Mrs. level, this organization is all about service,” Becky said. “Which is the way I always try to live my life. I see this as an additional way to share my message and inspire girls — who are tomorrow’s women — hopefully helping them avoid some of the pitfalls that lead to anxiety and depression.”