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The North Kingstown Blog is excited to meet and promote any business that supports the arts, especially with the youth of North Kingstown. Situated in the Lafayette Mills Complex is local dance studio IDance Academy. According to her bio on IDance’s website, www.idanceri.com, the owner and head instructor, Miss Kelly, “has been dancing for 30 years and has been instructing for 15 years. She earned her Bachelors of Arts in Dance/Choreography from Rhode Island College and enjoys instructing many dance disciplines for all ages!” I recently caught up with Miss Kelly to learn more about IDance and why dance is such an important part of her life.
Kelly, great to meet you. So as a musician and a writer, I express myself creatively through songs, poems, and verse. What does dance do for the body, mind, and spirit (I’m a Springfield College grad and that was our motto)?
Dance is my mind, body and spirit. I don’t do anything in my life without dance on my mind. It is a way to express yourself without saying a word. Without having to explain yourself except through body movement. Dance helps you get in touch with your body and accepting yourself for who you are. It keeps me young, yet focused on myself.
Dancing can be awkward for some. Being non athletic or not able to keep up with a beat or just clumsy. How do you overcome these obstacles with your clients?
I believe anyone and everyone can dance, but we all learn differently. Some students learn visually watching my movement. Some students learn by verbal description. I try to teach my students the way that best suits them. Some students cannot count on the beat, so I tend to teach them using the words of the songs. And some students learn better counting the beats (1-8) and I use that technique. Teaching students the best way for them grows their love of dance quicker. Everyone can be taught how to dance. But, you cannot teach passion and emotion to be expressed through dance. That is the hardest part!
Who has inspired you to be an instructor of dance? What motivates you to make people want to express themselves through dance?
I have wanted to own a dance studio since I was about 7. I started dancing at 5 and it became part of me. I have always loved teaching dance and choreographing routines. When I was a child, I would always be choreographing routines with my friends and neighbors. It was and will never be “work” to choreograph dances. Just watching my students enjoying dancing and learning brings tears to my eyes. Because, I was once that student. Everyone needs a creative outlet and dance is a wonderful outlet. It intertwines body movement and emotion into one.
In music, timing is everything. What is that “everything” in dance?
Emotion and how you convey it to others is everything in dance. You can have beautiful technique, but if you are not able to express yourself emotionally then you will never reach your full potential as a dancer.
What goes on in the “Acrobatics” class? That sounds very interesting!!!
Acrobatics is a combination of dance and tumbling. At iDance Academy, it is a Jazz/Tumbling or Contemporary/tumbling combination <–(solos, duos and trios usually).
What can students and parents expect when they sign up for IDance Academy?
Students and parents should be expecting acceptance into our iDance family. They should expect their children to learn in a fun and creative environment, but they will learn correct technique and terminology. They will see my respect for the entire IiDance family and that I am always here to help. I have wonderful relationships with the parents at iDance Academy that go further than just dance classes.
Do you want to plug any upcoming specials, discounts, events, etc.?
We have “Bring a Friend” week from Monday, October 5th through Saturday, October 10th. When the friend signs up for dance classes, the current student gets $20 off for EACH new student. If they do not have a friend currently enrolled, their first dance class is always free to try!
Where can people find out more about you online, social media?
Social media has been great for us. I have gotten most of my students through Facebook, Google listings and word of mouth, which is the oldest form of social media. Visit my Facebook page at IDance Academy and see my amazing students!!!
Any staff or volunteers that you would like to recognize as part of your successful team?
Technically, I am the entire staff. President/instructor/choreographer/bookkeeper/marketing manager. But, I have had lots of help along the way. I have wonderful parents who helped my dream come true by helping financially and emotionally. They are always there to talk to and to bounce ideas off of. They also help behind-the-scenes at our annual dance recitals! I have a wonderful boyfriend who supports my passion and loves me for following my dream. I have wonderful friends and my sister who also help backstage at the recitals. Many of my wonderful teen dancers help me as assistants in classes (Lilli and Emmie) and they support each other through our competition and recital season!
I wanted to add all the exciting dance classes we have to offer at iDance! We have classes for almost all ages, 2 through adult. We offer Ballet, Modern/Contemporary, Jazz, Hip Hop, Tap, Acrobatics, Pointe, competition classes and combination classes for the younger dancers. We also have an Adaptive dance class for children (and hopefully soon for adults) with special needs, Family Zumba and Stretch & Conditioning classes. I have offered Mommy & Me classes and Ballet Funk classes (Ballet/Hip Hop) but I do not have ones currently running. However, if there is interest I will definitely start one!