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Hi!  Thanks for visiting! 

 

I wonder what you're interested in? Please feel free to leave a message so I'll know what content to post. To do that you would have to click on the "contact" button above. On my Kid's page you'll find: A Biography, a SumoFrog Color Page, A Gymnastic & Hip Hop Word Search, a story for you to illustrate and occassional random points of interest such as the following.

 

Want to be smarter than the average kid?

* Drink water every day

* Eat healthy foods, limit junk food

* Stretch more 

*Play harder

*Sleep more

*Show kindness often

*Laugh as often as possible 

 

All these choices maximize your brain's potential. You do want to be as smart as possible don't you?

Here are some links for actvity pages you can print out

 

 

 

 

A BIOGRAPHY in 6 paragraphs

I was born on January 11th, 1963 in the Chicago suburb of Bellwood Illinois.(the "s" is silent in "Illinois", for those of you not from the States.) I went to St. Simeon School for my Elementary days, grades K - 8. I've always been that kid who wanted to do everything! If you would have asked me what I wanted to be in Kindergarten I would have told you, " a Queen, a Dancer, an Actress, a Director, the person who makes up the Dances,(I didn't know the word choreographer back then.), a Teacher, an Artist, a Clown,(named Jocko Peanuts) and a Jungle Explorer". Today, I pretty much do all those things in my job as Ms. Dani, Artist in Residence. I don't explore jungles, but there are days at school when I'm pretty sure I've taught a few monkeys.  

When I was a kid I took Dance classes every week and Theater classes whenever the local community center offered them. My Mom was never allowed to take after-school classes as a kid, so I got to take whatever I wanted, and I loaded up! There was one rule, I had to actually attend every class I signed up for, no quitting allowed. I think was always a Director. I remember coaching my friends in our scenes as we played dolls to try to get real tears when they pretended to cry. I was also always a Performer. Only when I was a kid they had a different word for it. They called me a ham or show-off. I was always looking for ways to get on stage. In grade two I found a play of an Aesop fable in my school's library and made my best friend at the time, Lisa, perform it with me in front of the class. My teacher was so surprised when I asked if we could show it that she let us. I really enjoyed the experience of dramatically telling a story and feeling an audience respond.

One day while in grade 7, I was student teaching at Aunt Thelma's School of Dance. My job was to take attendance, put the records on and off, demonstrate dances in the front of the class and write notes of what the class learned each lesson. One day my teacher didn't feel well and had to leave class right in the middle. I took over and discovered something about myself. I had a teacher's intuition. The class was Acrobatics and the lesson was Bridges. For a moment I wasn't sure I could teach by myself, I was only 13 years old. Then as I tried I found not only could I teach by myself, but I was good at it and loved it! When class was over all the mom's came up to me and said, "You need to really be a teacher, you're good at it!". When you do something and you get a special feeling; like your whole being is full of joy and saying this is what you were meant for, you should listen to that feeling. It's a clue telling you what to do with you life. 

In 1977, when I was a Freshman in High school,(grade nine for my Canadian friends),  my gym teacher came up to me one day in October. She said,"Next month I'm supposed to teach a Dance unit, but I can't Dance. I noticed you can. Will you teach the unit for me? I'll figure out something I can give you in exchange and of course you'll get a 4 in P.E.( Which meant an A)". So I did and I suppose you could say that was my first "Artist in Residence". I taught my peers the Bus Stop and Hussle, dances that were popular back in the Disco era. In exchange I got to rehearse in the Dance studio during free times. Some people in class were hating on me for the privilege of my being in charge, but my self-esteem could take it. Life was giving me opportunities to discover the leader in me.

When I was in college, 1980(I graduated High school in 3 years), I kind of had to choose between Dance and Theater. I had a deep passion for Dance, but I hadn't been given sufficient Ballet training to compete with those who had. By the time I figured out I needed more, I was already 17 and that's pretty old to catch up.  I decided my focus would be Theater and my Dance would be helpful but not my career. In my Theater classes, I discovered I loved painting and making sets and was proud when given big assignments. I always loved being given the resonsibilty to do big jobs like build and paint the sets for the college production. 

As an adult, I've done just about every job there is in Theatrical production from writing the scripts to running the lights. I've auditioned, performed, choreographed, directed and taught professionally in New York City. I have had the honor of being resident choreographer for TADA! Theater Co. and an Artist chosen by Young Audiences New York to create Performing Arts programming for both General Ed. and Special Needs. I really love how all the experiences I had along the way help to make me the best teacher I can be for you! Now I look forward to seeing all the experiences you and your school-mates will have as we create Art that moves!

 

My First Big Solo age 5   

My Grade 2  school pic

Grade 7 school pic

 I love Ballet class ! 

It takes lots of auditions