Growing up, Joanne's Dance Extension was my second home. Sure, I slept at my house, but other than that the studio was as much a home to me as my real home. I ate, did homework, spent time with people I loved, and when I needed to get away from one home, I always had warm, loving arms waiting for me at the other. I did a lot of growing up at both places. Joanne and her studio not only made me the dancer I am today, but also the person I am today. She taught me many valuable lessons that I will never forget. She taught me that it’s not about how many turns you can do or how high you kick your leg, what matters most is the heart of a dancer. Loving what you do is more important than being the best at something you hate. She taught me to never give up because if you want it bad enough, anything is possible. She taught me that family is inconceivably important and will always be there for you, especially when you need them most.
Going away to college made me realize how lucky I had it at home. I wasn’t raised in a studio that trained their dancers to win competitions. I wasn’t raised in a studio that only performed at recitals. I was raised in a studio that gave me a strong base of technique and the ability to perform. Once you attain these things you can build on your technique to create your own style and develop your own “tricks”. This dance studio provides you with all of the tools that any dancer needs to succeed in the real world of dance but doesn’t force any of them upon you. The true dancer takes it upon themselves to be dedicated and passionate enough to make use of the tools provided. Once they take that step, wanting it for themselves and finding out how to make it happen, they will achieve the greatness they strive for.
JDE Graduate 2007
University of New York at Buffalo BFA Program Graduate
I first walked through the doors of Joanne's Dance Extension when I was three years old. The summer prior, my Mother asked me what activity I wanted to try, and I responded with "I wanna be a ballerina", as most little girls do. Little did I know at that time that I was entering a place that would forever hold a very special place in my heart, and provide me with some of the most valuable memories anyone could ask for. I started out as a recreational dancer at Joanne's and worked my way into the competition team. When auditioning for college dance programs, I feel that the training I received at the studio in preparation for interviews and classes that we participated in at certain competitions helped make the auditioning process much less stressful because I was already comfortable with it. The technique that I acquired from the ballet and modern classes at Joanne's is far beyond what any other studio in the area can offer. While auditioning in New York, one of the things I am often complimented on is my technique and I always smile to myself and think back to Miss Julie's ballet classes, Miss Mary's modern classes, and Miss Joanne's jazz/lyrical classes. When arriving at college I found that I was a very well trained tap dancer as well, being placed in the highest level of tap right off the bat freshman year, thanks to Mr. David.
Not only is the technical training at Joanne's remarkable, the bonds you form are unbreakable. The friendships I have made at Joanne's Dance Extension will truly last forever. Whenever I return to Michigan, the first place I want to go is the dance studio because I know that when I arrive there will be nothing but smiles awaiting me. My JDE dance family is always there for me whenever I need a good laugh or a shoulder to cry on. Miss Joanne has played a huge part in making me the person and dancer I am today. She is like a second mother to me and has watched me grow up and mature as a dancer and person. Miss Joanne has also taught me to have an excellent work ethic. I will always remember what she said to me while I was preparing to compete for Miss Dance of America: "Whenever you feel like you are too tired to run your dance again, just remember that there is someone out there that you will be competing against who is running their dance again right now. The person who has worked the hardest will win in the end." I feel like this quote can be applied not only to dance, but also to life in general.
JDE Graduate 2006
Marymount Manhattan - Dance and Business Dual Major Graduate
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Joanne's Dance Extension
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