3 weeks in…
Operating, teaching, learning, collaborating, sharing, believing, trusting, loving, crying, laughing, seeing, NOT sleeping, functioning, breathing & being present. So many feelings are being experienced, but just to name a few.
I can joyfully say that I am currently in my 22nd Season of Dance Education at my studio, DanceWorks Studios, in Montclair, NJ. I am confident in saying that this time is a first for us independent small business dance studio owners. As we are all aware of the many "firsts" in our lives that we encounter, it truly gives one the opportunity to embrace what is. We find a way to not only get through but to exist with energy, passion, desire, drive & determination. Honestly, this is not easy at all but it is a must in our communities and for each and every one of our students. Not only those currently studying the art of dance, but the thousands who have studied in the past & the dancers whose lives we have touched and are choosing dance as their careers.
We are not skipping a beat... literally.
We had our last classes in our home on Friday, March 13, 2020. On Monday, March 16th, we went virtual. The entire weekend we planned, designed, brainstormed & put into place a program designed specifically for our student body. My intent was to be as authentic as we all are in our studio. It was never about the perfect lighting, the hair, the makeup, rather it was about showing up for our dancers and letting them know that we practice what we preach. “The Show Must Go On-" and what a show it has been. This is by far the biggest production to date for DanceWorks Studios. The team effort on behalf of my staff is unmatched & truly incredible. The constant commitment to continuously provide the best and most quality in dance education always, regardless of life’s circumstances.
It is and will always be my personal mission to create an environment where children feel safe, comfortable, challenged & excited to be a part of. When I opened my doors 22 years ago I vowed that every child who wants to dance will have the opportunity at my studio regardless of economic status. I am proud to say we currently gifted $20,000 annually in free dance scholarships to children who expressed a deep desire and love of dance. This brings me great joy daily. Let me acknowledge that this is made possible because of the incredible clientele I have been blessed with. My families who have in the past, and currently choose DanceWorks Studios as their child’s “home” have made it possible through their financial tuition installments for their children. It has allowed me to offer dance to all whom deserve.
This, my friends, is something very dear to my heart, soul & existence.
During this time of uncertainty, it is now more important than ever to support our small dance studios in our communities. My brick & mortar space has provided so very much for each child that comes through our door and chooses to be grounded with us throughout their childhood. It is my “ask” that students & families within their communities “rise together" and continue to financially support your hometown dance studio. We ALL want to be here supporting, dancing, loving & laughing with your children when this comes to an end. I will continue with my incredible staff to develop, educate and bring the best of dance into your homes. We will rise together as ONE... this I wholeheartedly believe. I will continue to live by FAITH not fear.
In closing, it is with my sincerity that each and every dance studio owner navigates his or her way through this storm. This too shall pass and we will all see one another dancing our way through this beautiful life. Looking forward to sharing the stage with so many of you all in the near future. Please, watch your inbox and social media tomorrow for next week's LIVE ZOOM SCHEDULE.