What is your favorite thing about being a dance teacher at Brodhead Dance Academy? My favorite thing about being a dance teacher is quite simply the children. I love watching children progress and grow. Watching children who start out shy and afraid at class dance on stage in front of hundreds of people with a big smile on their face is very rewarding. We build confidence in our dancers –that’s the most important thing we do. We give them an opportunity to thrive and provide them the tools they need to be successful.
What age did you first start dancing? I was 3. At Ginger’s School of Dance in Brooklyn, Wis. My first ballet performance was Mother Goose’s Birthday Party, I was a white bunny and my mom hand made my costume complete with a cotton tail.
Where did you receive your training and/or what degrees/certificates do you have? I took dance lessons at Ginger’s Dance School in Brooklyn/Oregon from age 3 until graduation. I spent many weekends and summers in Chicago with Dance Masters and at other seminars. I became a demonstrator at a young age, then I started teaching dance in high school under Ms. Ginger’s guidance. I then went to college for a non-dance degree. I graduated from UW Madison with degrees in both Journalism and Psychology and then later earned a third in Advanced Management and Leadership from the UW School of Business.
What words of advice do you have for our young dancers? Enjoy the entire dance experience. From hard practices and sore muscles to getting up on stage… that whole process of growth is what is important. Not just the costume and the performances. Dance can be a life changing experience if you embrace all it has to offer.
Tell me about you in a few sentences. I started the dance academy so that my own daughters would have a place to learn to dance. For the past 17 years, I’ve worked full time at my job in Madison as the Communications Director at TDS Telecom and also built the studio to let even more children enjoy the art of dance. My husband “Mr. Doran” and I are enjoying our empty nest at home now with our girls in college and love to be at the studio with all the students and parents. The Academy has filled our lives with pride and I’m thankful I’ve been able to do what I love all of these years and thankful to have a dedicated teaching staff who shares my love of dance.