Growing up, the dance studio was a second home for me. Some weeks it felt as though I logged more hours on the dance floor than I did my bed. I shared these long hours with some of my best friends. With every hour we spent in the studio we became more and more like a family. My dance girls saw me through some of the highest and lowest points of my life, my whole dance family did. With time, the studio becomes more than just four walls, and the students more than just our classmates.
These relationships are essential to the success of a dance group. When we walk on that stage there is no more I, it becomes we. If we do not take times to nurture and develop these friendships, our dancing will suffer. When dancers create these bonds it becomes evident in the routine. The dancers can connect and begin to dance as one. They listen to each other and learn to work together solving problems in real time.
These friendships are not only important for on the stage, but also benefit students off the stage. The studio is a place for growth and learning. For students to maximize on this learning they must feel they are in a safe and supportive environment. If there is turmoil between students they may be reserved and afraid to fail. When we create these friendships student talent can soar. Encouraging voices that wish them nothing but success surround them. It becomes a place where we can laugh at our mistakes and push each other to be the best version of ourselves.
Lastly, dance friends are the best friends. We often don’t get much time out of the studio, so creating friends allows dance to be an even more enjoyable experience. Even if we are having a bad day we can come to the studio and know there is a room of friends waiting to greet and support us.
My dance friends and family are one of my biggest support systems and always will be. Dance friendships are truly unique, and there is nothing more enjoyable than seeing my students interact and become a little family.
Submitted by Andrea Nent