Ballet Arizona Student Matinee attendees at Symphony Hall.
Why does it matter?
From student matinees, to adaptive dance classes, to free or low cost community programs, part of Ballet Arizona’s mission is to bring dance to as many people as we can each year. But why? This question has many different answers but ultimately the reason is that dance creates opportunities for individuals to better themselves and the world around them.
First and foremost, dance provides a means of self-expression, something that many people struggle with. According to the National Dance Education Organization (NDEO), “Arts research shows that students who study dance are more expressive in their communication of emotions, thoughts, and feelings.” Dance opens doors to communication by providing different ways to express what they are feeling and thinking through movement. This helps people find more confidence in themselves and develop their ability to connect with others.
Secondly, dance also helps people become aware of the wider world around them and find their place in it. Because movement is an international language, dance has the power to bring people together from all countries and cultures. Those who experience dance also have the opportunity to be a part of diverse networks and learning communities. The experiences gained through this exposure allow people to practice and grow their observational and interpersonal skills, which helps them become more informed members of society.
What we’re trying to say is that education in the art of dance leads to more than just learning dance steps. The process of learning dance is also a process of learning how to think critically, grow in nonverbal communication, exchange ideas, work together as a group, and work within a multicultural society. We believe that these self-motivated, expressive, and creative people are the ones who will change the world. Thank you for believing in our mission and for supporting our efforts to shape and empower the future leaders of our society.