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It is hard to believe that 14 years has flown by since I first met Deborah Rogers at the Spencer Theater. It was there that she first expressed her vision of providing all her students more than just a recital, more than just a chance to dress up on stage for their parents. She wanted her students to experience actually performing on that stage in a professional environment. Having started my career in professional ballet production, I was fascinated by watching those kids instinctively push themselves to excel within their training just because they were there. Nothing compares to the sight of a child’s face when they discover their own possibilities and reach beyond their own concepts of limitations. I have been hooked ever since.
Of course, this extraordinary opportunity didn’t just affect the students. The Dali' Ballet Company grew into a close nit team all working together to find new ways to break through our own limitations. As our production quality and scope expanded, we watched those children do the same and actually becoming dancers.
Many have gone on and are still dancing today.
The most difficult barrier to break seems to be in teaching a community of the treasures that lie in their own back yard. Treasures built from and for a community that they can be truly proud of. That is the definition of a community non-profit. Every new patron that witnesses one of Dali' Ballet’s productions for the first time usually has one comment…”I was blown away”!