My life in New Jersey was filled with dance classes, choreography, and even more dance. I taught ballet, tap, jazz, and modern at a wonderful studio called Metuchen Dance Centre for 5 years. This was my home away from home. I was there 4, sometimes 5 times a week for classes, rehearsals, office work, picking out recital music, choosing costumes, creating new programs for summer, helping to re-work the schedule….the list goes on and on. But it wasn’t work there, it was sharing a love of a life that few understand. The life of a dance teacher.
So imagine having to leave, mid-year, this family that you have spend endless hours pouring your love, sweat, pirouettes, and now, tears with. Leaving my family at MDC was one of THE hardest things I’ve ever had to do.
23 days later–with no dance classes in sight–I was connected with Gina. Gina, I’m told, is involved with a dance school in Anguilla. There’s a dance school here?!? Fantastic! I immediately contact her and she invites Tim and I to see her perform with the Myoumba Folkloric Theatre group at the Anacaona Boutique Hotel. When the performance was over, Gina and I met eyes and said almost in unison, “are you Holly/Gina?” lol We hit it off right away, like we were long lost friends.
She was very excited that I was on the island because the dance school she’s involved with was in need of teachers so the school can grow and further enhance the quality of the education provided. On Sunday I took a Musical Theater workshop at the school. Before the class started, around 12pm, Gina introduced me to the owners of Klassique Academy of Dance and we had a quick chat introducing ourselves. I was told the owners would call me later that night. Later that night when Tim and I returned home from a beach party, I noticed I had 4 missed calls and a text! After returning their calls & texts, we met again that same night to chat. It was ultimately decided I was going to teach 45 minutes of a modern class and 45 minutes of a jazz class on Monday night.
I started my modern class on the floor as I always do, with spiral x’s. Basically you are leading with one extremity (fingers or toes) and using that extremity to lead the body in a roll. Then we did seated leg swings etc etc etc….then I taught them part of a piece I had choreographed to the movie theme song, “Triplets of Belleville”. They did well with the movement and even giggled a little at it (which is good because it’s a silly and fun piece). Keep in mind that this was probably the first modern class any of the kids had ever taken–they did excellent and really seemed to enjoy it!
Moving on to jazz I got them into it with a warm-up I had choreographed to “Rich Man’s Frug” from Sweet Charity and they had a ball with it! Most of them had never heard of Bob Fosse so this will be a treat for me to be able to teach them about his style. We worked on pas de bourees, pirouettes, and then I moved onto a combination. Again they had such a good time–as did I. The energy in that room was addictive! I felt like I could’ve stayed there and taught for 3 more hours!
Long story short (to late), I am officially teaching and on the schedule at Klassique Academy of Dance and Performing Arts Anguilla and I’m very excited.
The link to Klassique’s Facebook page: http://facebook.com/KADPAA
The link to Metuchen Dance Centre’s website: http://metuchendance.com/