It's April! For many dance studios around the country, this means the spring recital or show season is upon us. As students, parents, and teachers are preparing for the big show weekend, here is what I want my own students and other dancers everywhere to hear.

I know this is a crazy and busy time. So pleases remember, if you're here, you probably enjoy dance, at least a little bit. Remember why you are here when you get frustrated or nervous, and always ask for what you need. Your teachers are more than happy to clarify a section of your routine or go over counts. This is a busy time for us as well, so if it ever seems like we are breezing over something, let us know, we want nothing more than for you to feel confident and ready, come recital time.

Whether this is your first recital or your last, cherish every moment. Whether you dance competitively and perform all the time, or you dance one night every week leading up to one big show, this time of year is for you to showcase not only the things you've learned this year but the feelings dancing brings you.

You have spent the entire year preparing pieces, working on your technique, and bonding with your dance sisters in classes. All of the things you love about dance are because of the environment you and your teachers create each and every day at the studio. Not only is the final show for you to outwardly express and perform, but it is a time for you to reflect on the growth and amazing times you have had this year.

For the seniors, make every moment count from here to the recital. You will likely never be a student at your home studio, on a weekly basis, ever again. Take this time to remember all the reasons you love what you do, and to tell those around you how grateful you are for them being a part of your journey as a dancer.

To my kiddos, I am so proud of you!! Your growth and progress throughout this year is so obvious. You guys have made my job as a teacher so worthwhile, and more rewarding than I could have ever imagined. I will cherish the feeling of sharing what I love to do, with all of you, for my entire life.

My hope is that one day, you might love this thing called dance, even a little bit if you don't already. My hope is that you will find moments to be proud of yourself, and hard on yourself, all in order to better yourself, not as just a dancer, but as a human. My hope is that dance will help you see the world as a place of endless opportunity for connection.

My biggest hope is that you will go up on that stage, under those bright lights and in front of all those people and just "live". I hope you have so much fun, and that when you come off the stage, you feel so full of life, happiness, and pride. My hope is that you give every minute your all, and stay genuine while you tell your story.

My hope is that you dance with your mind and your heart, like the beautiful young women you are. I adore you all. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to teach you.

My hope is that you dance with your heart, on and off the stage, forever.

So much love,

Your dance teacher