#DANCEFORWARD STORIES

Why We Dance

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LORI D'ORAZIO

"Dance is my first true love. The studio is my HOME. It is there I can explore, create, move, learn, and feel. It is where I am challenged and where I grow. This is why I am fighting for a dance home that is just, equitable, safe, and diverse. It is long past time for change, and I can't wait to get back to a studio that is just, respectful, diverse, and safe. I am ready to #danceforward."

See Lori's full story here.

JOZANNE SUMMERIVLLE

"For the first time, I had black dance instructors: black ballet, black jazz, black modern and black hip hop dance educators. And to top it off, every shade of person was taking class from them. 

It made me fall in love with DC. It felt like home and was home 5-7 days a week. Representation matters."

#danceforward

See Jozanne's post here

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MELANIE MATOS

"Inevitably, dance friends turned into real friends. If I, or anyone, missed class, it was noticed. It was followed up on. We look out for each other... we raise each other up, we celebrate life, embrace each other through the most challenging times. Dance is my whole heart. I dance to plug in, to connect, and to feel.


These are just a couple incredible highlights from my past 6 years at Joy and why I #danceforward."

See Melanie's full story here

CAITLIN MITCHELL

"Dance has never been one physical place to me. It's not a studio, or a theatre. Rather, it's the feeling I get when I'm pouring sweat, but my teacher yells 'come on, one more time, don't you quit on me!'. It's when the instructor walks to the stereo, hits play, and gives us a preview of the incredible choreo we're about to learn. The faculty are what make dance magical.


As a community, let's reclaim our Joy, and unwaveringly commit to transforming the dance world to be radically inclusive. Let's #danceforward together."

See Caitlin's full story here.

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STEPHANIE VADALA

"I #danceforward for my students.

I dance forward for their trust in me to impart history, culture, and vocabulary to enrich their lives. I dance forward for the smiles and love I get to see every week. And I am so grateful that they live life openly so they may take on new challenges. They propel me through this weird time we’re living in. And I have faith that they will help propel us to reclaim our joy."

See Stephanie's full story here

Photo Credit: Sut Sae-Tia

Interested in sharing your Joy story? Get in touch today.