Friday, May 10, 2013

In the face of tragety it's time to dance

Starting with the tragedy in the Newtown, Conn. shootings where so many young lives were lost-- to the Boston Marathon where young children lost life and limb... I've found myself in a very sad and angry state.
Why?  It's such a simple question, but such a complicated answer.

I've been dancing since I was 3. I'm now 43 and I'm still dancing as a dance teacher/studio owner.  What breaks my heart is hearing stories from Newtown where a dance school lost students, not because of some dance school drama or a bad teacher. Because they were killed! Pre-ballet students gone from the class. I wonder just how they are dealing with that loss at their annual recital?  Sadly I lost one of my dancers a week after our recital a few years ago - she had a brain aneurysm. Our little Bella - a cute yellow cuddly duck was gone. I was so happy we helped her have a happy dance-filled life, however short lived it was. She loved to dance.

A dance teacher lost her limb in Boston. And who knows what type of costume factories there may be in Bangladesh where tragedy has struck yet again. Our dance lives are embedded in the daily lives we live, but do we really stop and think about what it all means to us?

My mother who died when I was 22 was not a book worm by any means, she was too busy to stop and read a book. But in cleaning up her things I found a book that sits on my book shelf today its written by Shirley MaClaine and titled "Dance While You Can."

Still in all these years since she passed, I have not taken the time to read this book. I paged through it and even store a few keepsakes in it's pages... but now I think I need to take the time to read it. (Just as soon as my dance recital is over next weekend).Maybe she was trying to tell me something.

A time to dance.  For so many that time has ended, and yet for me it's a time to reflect on just how lucky I am that I can dance.  That we all can dance - even with a prosthetic leg - I'm hopeful Adrianne the dance teacher maimed in the Boston Marathon will succeed in her quest to be on Dancing with the Stars as a competitor. I donated to her relief fund to help keep her motivated, to let her know our young dancers were watching her and praying for her.

Everyone says we should count our blessings... and I do.  I just wish those who have passed could do the same.  It's your time to dance!  It's our time to dance!  Let's go and do it for those who can not.

Break - a - Leg at your annual recitals everyone.  

Dancingly Yours,


Thursday, February 14, 2013

I Love to Dance! Happy Valentine's Day

I've talked about this many times before. The importance of positive talk.  In our studio we end every class by saying "I'm Smart. I'm Strong and I Love to Dance". Not just on Valentine's day but EVERY day for the past 12 years at dance class our students have shouted, danced and sang this statement. (some classes get pretty creative). When I originally started this I did it to provide young people a chance to learn positive self talk and how important that can be in everyday life.  Back then I thought I might change out our "slogan" every few years for another... but I never could develop one that was as short and effective as I'm Smart. I'm Strong and I Love to Dance.  If you want to read more about this technique visit to read a story published in Dance Studio Life.

I encourage you to give your dancers a gift each class with a statement such as this or one you create yourself. Please feel free to use's my gift to you this Valentine's Day.

Dancingly Yours,

Releve' Dance Poster sample

Releve' Dance Poster sample
sample of poster