How And Why Nichelle Launched Dance Advantage

How Dance Advantage Came to Be

I grew up taking dance at a local studio. I fell almost instantly in love and knew my future included dance. I was mentored, starting at a relatively young age, by my teacher in assisting and later instructing classes and found I also had a passion for teaching. I have worked for several dance studios in different parts of the country, taught as adjunct faculty in a college dance program, choreographed and acted in community theater, instructed community classes, danced professionally in modern dance companies… well, as you can see my experiences are quite varied. I have learned much from each and every experience and I try to bring that to my teaching and writing.

I believe in 2003, after about 10 years of teaching in dance studios, I was feeling that there was just so much that I wanted to pass on to my students but was discouraged by the feeling that my time was always limited. I wanted to go beyond just technique and training and share what I had learned about dance history, choreography, dance artists, kinesiology/anatomy, even life lessons that I had learned through dance. I tried to infuse my teaching with these things but I still wanted to offer more. I began looking online for resources for dance students. I figured if I couldn’t fit it all in, perhaps I could at least find some places online to which I could send students and feel confident that they were getting quality information. Unfortunately, I found little! It was at that point that Dance Advantage became a seed in my mind.

It was not until early 2008 when, as a new mom, I was not teaching for the first time in my life and I discovered blogging. I had been using a blog to keep distant family updated about the progress of my pregnancy and new baby. I never thought of a blog as anything more than an online journal. Then, I met a stay-at-home mom that, with her blog, had created a sort-of online magazine for frugal moms. I began to think and research more about what a blog could be and discovered I had found the perfect soil for that little seed to grow. So, knowing almost nothing, in April 2008 I jumped in with both feet and created Dance Advantage. I have learned a great deal about blogging, about writing, about business and marketing, computers and social networking – it’s amazing really!

What Dance Advantage Is and What I Hope it Will Become

Dance Advantage continues to be a work in progress. My goals are always to increase the amount and caliber of the content offered here. I want to reach out to dance students, teachers, and parents and create a place that they know they can count on for quality information, a place that connects and unifies those working in and experiencing dance training, a place that provides inspiration, motivation, and sparks new ideas, a place that reflects who I am but also supports who you are. I seek to be participant within the dance community even more than an authority. I hope to raise as many questions as I answer. The articles and information here at Dance Advantage are just part of the picture.

Another part is ME. I am a real person. I’m not an “entity” with editors, producers, or financiers. It’s just me offering myself, my knowledge, and my experience. I will not always be perfect. I will not always be right. I will not be everything to everyone. The flip side of this, though, is that I AM REAL. You can contact me, you can ask me questions, you can interact with me. I can point you to other places and spaces that can offer you what I can’t. I can say “I don’t know” and then try to help you find the answer.

Another part is YOU. The blog is like a searchable magazine that grows one post at a time but as more people add to the content with their comments and input, as more seek to further their experience through joining my extended community via Facebook and Twitter, as more people connect and meet others, the site becomes more than just a website. It changes, it grows, it shifts because of your participation.