In the fall of 2011, Feet First member Kathy Wolman opened a dance studio in the former Alternative Energy building, now known as Solar Suites, owned by David Katz. The studio is used primarily as a home for ballet classes, but is also used for Feet First rehearsals, workshops and Pilates.
Since the studio opened there has been a resurgence of interest by adults looking to dance, taking classes as well as performing. Currently, some of these women are preparing to participate in the upcoming Feet First production, Dance Me To The Moon. Following is some background on these dancers.
Melanie: “My mother was a professional ballerina and ballet teacher. I was around it until about seven or eight years old. Then life took over and dance slowly faded from my life. My daughter’s performance in the ballet recital last December reignited my desire to dance and it became an actual reality when Kathy said she had an adult ballet class. I started taking classes last January with another ‘ballet mom,’ Jennifer, who also has two daughters in ballet. Soon after, Natalie joined us and we became known as the ‘ballet moms.’
”Taking Kathy’s class introduced us not only to ballet but to an amazing group of women. We were dancing next to Sue (Burdick) and Diane (Richardson), who invited us to a Feet First meeting for the February show. This meeting introduced us to even more creative, loving and supportive women.
”Kathy’s ballet class has transformed every area of my life in the most beautiful and positive ways. I am so thankful and grateful to be part of such an amazing group of women, doing such amazing beautiful things.”
Natalie: “I started ballet as soon as I could walk and danced until my teacher moved away when I was entering high school. I lived in a small town and I had no one else to dance with, so I didn’t dance again until I took ballet for some kinesiology credit in college. The girls there were not very fun to be around, and the dance world can be very competitive, not loving or supportive, so I gave it up.
”Last year I decided to ask Kathy to do a ballet barre class at her studio and was informed by Kathy that I would, in fact, dance as well. It has become an overwhelming love and passion for me from the amazing women I’m dancing with, to the adorable girls in pre-primary and my amazing boy’s class that I am now teaching. Thank you to Kathy for teaching us to dance.”
Jennifer: “As a child I grew up with former Feet First dancer Sophia Formosa and have always loved dance but mostly played school sports. Coming from Ettersburg the drive was a big commitment to get to the dance classes so I enjoyed the Feet First shows from the audience.
”When my oldest daughter Caidence was four we were living in Fortuna and I enrolled her in the Ferndale Dance Academy. Caidence loved ballet and when we moved back to Southern Humboldt I enrolled her in Kathy’s dance studio in Redway.
”Kathy approached Melanie and I about being in her show, The Sugar Plum Suite, and dancing with our daughters. Both my daughters were in the show at the time and wouldn’t let me say no. I did the show and Melanie and I became very close. We asked Kathy if she would please do a beginning ballet class for us since we both shared the passion to learn ballet. Natalie joined and our first performance was the Summer Arts Fair. The class has grown since then and I believe that Kathy’s studio is a huge asset to the community.”
Feet First is excited to be joined by these lovely, talented, dedicated dancers. We look forward to sharing our latest creative talents with the community and hope you will join us at the Mateel Community Center Feb. 14-17 for Dance Me To The Moon.