May 1, 2007
Dear Dancers, Parents, Friends and Supporters:
My vision for the Maple Conservatory of Dance is that it will become a place to love, appreciate, respect, learn from and support those who are involved with keeping the beautiful art of dance alive for generations to come.
My childhood was almost entirely void of all types of art. I grew up during a time in California when music and art programs were almost non-existent in the public schools. It wasn't until my early twenties when I became a patron at the Orange County Performing Arts Center that I belatedly discovered the art & beauty of dance and realized that something extraordinary was missing from my life. Over the past two decades, I have been fortunate to enjoy countless outstanding classical & contemporary dance performances at various venues, right here in Orange County.
I strongly believe that art is a vital ingredient in the life of every human being. And as the mother of three children, unlike my childhood, I am ensuring that my children have art in their lives. My oldest daughter is pursuing a professional dance career and is a student in the Dance Division at The Juilliard School in New York. My middle daughter will be enrolled this fall in the Film and Television program at the Orange County High School of the Arts. And my youngest daughter is the sole athlete of the family!
Though my daughters are each pursuing very different interests, all three have taken dance lessons at one time or another and I've had the pleasure of accompanying them to countless hours of ballet and dance classes, starting with the Creative Movement/Pre-Ballet classes when they were young, to the advanced level classes with my oldest daughter.
During my journey as a dance parent & patron, I have learned much about the business side of dance and dance training, especially from my oldest daughter who attended various jazz/competition dance studios and pre-professional ballet schools, including the former Ballet Pacifica Academy. She ended up spending her last two years of high school at the North Carolina School of the Arts in their pre-professional ballet program. Needless to say, I have worked many a Nutcracker production!
Unlike Charles, I am not a former professional dancer. But, I have learned a great deal through my daughters' experiences and I believe that I offer a unique perspective that will contribute to Charles' and my vision for the Maple Conservatory of Dance. In addition to my experiences as a dance parent, I have over ten years of administrative and managerial experience and have spent the last two years as the Program Administrator for American Ballet Intensives, a company that offers rigorous ballet training & workshop programs to hundreds of dance students across the western U.S. region.
As a parent, I recognize that all of us want the best for our children. I especially understand the challenges of finding quality dance training for our sons and daughters — sadly, a few years ago the lack of quality dance training in our area led me to make a difficult decision to allow my oldest daughter move 3,000 miles away so that she could continue her ballet studies.
But now that the Maple Conservatory of Dance has become a reality, I am excited to be working with our incredible and excellent dance faculty to create a training program that will be of the highest caliber. This is truly an exciting time for me, as well as for the Orange County dance community!
I look forward to getting acquainted with all of you in the coming months. And it is my hope that, unlike my experience with my oldest daughter, the farthest you and your precious children will need to travel for the highest quality dance training is the Maple Conservatory of Dance!
Maple Conservatory of Dance