Last Spring, I was a recent MBA grad from the University of Buffalo and was looking for a positive way that I could use some of my newly acquired skills and free time to give back to our community. Through the power of social media, I was introduced to Krystal Sondel, current Chairman of the Board at danceability, and later asked to join the Board of Directors.
It wasn’t until I observed a class at the studio this fall that I truly understood the impact and the value that this dance studio provides. I arrived for Miss Christine’s Monday night class a few minutes early, where I was raced to the door by a dancer who couldn’t wait to get through the doors. While I waited for the current class to end, I got to see first-hand the powerful relationships that are formed at danceability. The students were all sitting together in the waiting room, catching up on what they have missed since last week’s class. The volunteers welcomed each student at the door and their faces lit up when they saw them. Even the parents who were just arriving to wait for their son or daughter’s dance class appeared to be at ease being around others who are in the same situation.
Miss Christine began her class of 5 dancers and 5 volunteers by having everyone get into a big circle to warm up to “Shake it Off”. As soon as the music started, I saw big smiles all around as everyone was loosening up their muscles for class. Some dancers started off slow, observing others around them and cautiously trying the moves while others jumped right in and broke it down. After warm up and stretching, the class began working on their combination. While Miss Christine was explaining the moves, all of the dancers were listening and paying attention. They couldn’t wait to call in an audience, so the parents were asked to come into the room to observe. The class ran through their dance three times, and each time I saw the student’s smiles get bigger and their confidence levels get higher. After they finished the dance I heard one student say “Everyone did good, we rocked the house!”. They looked at each other as a team, not just focusing on their own accomplishment.
What I observed that night only provided further justification that I made an excellent choice when deciding to join the board at danceability. I was able to see first-hand the benefit of the organization provides to our community.
The smiles that I saw on the faces that night were priceless, and I am happy to be a part of it!
– Amanda Grasso, danceability Board of Directors