Snow may have already fallen in Eckville, but that won’t stop a new year of dance.
Following the closing of Impact Dance in Eckville, a new studio has risen from the ashes. Aptly named, Phoenix Dance began lessons on Oct. 2 under the direction of former Impact instructor Tianna Nason.
Nason says the new studio will be recreational classes for children, youth and adults.
She teaches a wide range of styles from ballet, tap, jazz, hip hop and some introductory classes for the youngest members of the studio.
“I want to create a space where everyone feels welcomed and encouraged, that’s part of the reason why I’ve chosen to make the studio recreational at this time,” Nason said.
Without the worry of exams or competition, the dancers are able to focus on their love of dance and learning technique and growing their passion, she says.
Having danced since the age of three, Nason says she has seen the potentially negative atmosphere a dance studio can create.
“Some instructors think dance is everything and they can create a mean, competitive atmosphere that fosters self-doubt and even a hatred for something that was once loved,” Nason said.
“I don’t want that. I want all my dancers to feel comfortable in their own skin at the studio and outside its doors.”
Her goal as an instructor is to encourage a love of dance. She says technique is absolutely important, but without the passion behind it the technique doesn’t matter.
“You can see a dancer who has the best technique and great turnout, but you can see on her face that she doesn’t care about what she is doing. Without that passion and love, it takes you away from what you are watching.”
The push to open Phoenix Dance was a rather spur of the moment idea. After a discussion with a friend about Impact closing and the need for a new studio in town, Nason starting putting together what was needed for a new studio.
The studio began with a message on various Facebook groups about the possibility, and to gauge general interest.
Nason said she had an overwhelming response.
“I had so many likes and comments in support of the endeavour. However, we didn’t get as many people signing up for this session, I know the interest is there,” Nason said.
She expects to see her current 30 students grow for the next session, which will begin in January.
Nason says it was a whirlwind month to get everything together and ready to open the new studio, which is part of the reason classes began about a month later than usual.
However, she has training, insurance and first aid all in place.
And, as the studio grows Nason will look at other possibilities, such as hiring more staff and other experiences.
“Right now it is just me, so I’m alright with small classes.
“But as we grow I might look at hiring someone with their Royal Academy of Dance (RAD) certificate to have exams and maybe make the studio semi-competitive. We’ll see.”
Classes for Phoenix Dance are held Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday afternoon and evening at Coyote Fitness in Eckville.
More information about the studio can be found on the studio’s Facebook Page.