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Updated: Jun 21

Circa 2010 - Miss Lisa's first class as a dance teacher

"13 years ago, I taught my first jazz class.

Actually. This was my first time teaching EVER."

Fun Fact: I started and never stopped teaching or choreographing from this day on…. Quite literally, all through college and every week since. I never realized it until just this moment so… that’s wild.

In 2010, I just finished my senior year at RDC and was about to leave for school. Miss Jaime gave me one last parting gift; my own 1 hour class. I can’t recall what was going through my head that first time but I vividly remember the feeling I had once it was over. If there is one thing that remains true (and there are many from my time as a student) it’s the unrelenting support system at Revelations. My peers and I put in the work and created a bond that still holds to this day. Miss Jaime had a way of pulling out the best versions of ourselves as people/dancers, as long as we put in the work too. And we did. And she still does. 

It’s safe to say that Revelations is “the house that built me”.

My foundation was built solid, strong enough to go out into the world and build some more. I don’t just mean a dance foundation. I’m talking about the grit and grace that carried myself and my peers out into the world, prepared for whoever we decided to become. I was now a dance major away at school but I’d come back to the studio each and every visit home. Some nights I’d have that exact room in the video all to myself and I’d dance alone. When I was done, I’d shut the lights, lay on my back, supported by the floor that held me as a student and I’d stare at the ceiling fan that all of us hit once or twice going across the floor. I’d reflect on every time I almost quit, every time I learned something for the first time, every hard lesson learned and every opportunity I was given in this studio. The original studio had its own magic. It was tiny in comparison to what it is now. But all that love and passion couldn’t fit into the space anymore, so Miss Jaime made room. She’s always made room.

I don’t walk into the ‘purple room’ when I teach. I walk into the original studio, green and white walls with shallow ceilings. The room in the studio where I was given a chance and took risks. The room where I did it scared. The room where I found purpose, passion and my family. I think about each person who walks through the front door at the studio now and I wonder if they truly know how lucky they are. I wonder if any of them even knew I was also once a student here. Or that I read those same packets too. My parents were once dance parents too. I once had Miss Jaime teaching as my teacher too. Miss Linda sewed me into costumes too. My schedule was hard too. I chose this place too.

If I could tell Lisa in 2010 one thing, I’d tell her that she can do hard things. The things she never thought possible for herself. The pride that’s felt after doing it scared. The things that her own students will go through. And the things she will tell them because she went through it too. From student, to visitor, to teacher, to assistant director, to company manager… The house that built me became the home in which I am just months away from celebrating 10 years of teaching, learning, possibility and courage. Even on the tough days, I’m certain that the 2010 Lisa is still reminding me that ‘we’ve got this’.

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