Information & insights for graceful living.
Introducing Kara and Sarah…April 13, 2016
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You’ve probably already seen Kara Cooper and Sarah Fink around the studio–taking class, observing, and teaching. Both have now completed their teacher training and Everyday Ballet is so fortunate to have the talent and inspiration of these two beautiful women! If you’ve not already experienced a class from them, it’s a treat you won’t want to miss! Both are accomplished dancers who bring fresh perspective, passion, and expert knowledge to their classes.
(Above: Sarah Fink. Photo: Jason Riker)
Here’s some more about our wonderful new Everyday Ballet Instructors in their own words…
What made you want to do ballet?
Kara: As a product of the 80’s, I wanted nothing more than to emulate my pop idols–Madonna and Paula Abdul! Both trained in classical dance, and I had to follow suit. I begged my parents for lessons. Instead of doing jazz or hip hop, I had to begin with ballet because it’s like the science of dance for all types of movement. Fortunately, I ended up with a coach who saw something in me I didn’t know existed–and I’ve been dancing ballet ever since! It only takes one person who believes in you to change your life…
Sarah: I recall being dazzled by the spectacle of dance performances as a young child, especially the costumes. The idea that I could inhabit a different character, become a different person was magical. My mom put me in ballet classes as a very young child, so I got to experience that side of it early on, but after a few years what I fell in love with was the work and finesse inherent in the movement itself.
What is most personally valuable to you about doing ballet?
Kara: Really being in touch with your body and claiming ownership of the movement can be so empowering. Dancing is so visceral and “in the moment”– I feel so fortunate to be able to experience that for myself and share it with others.
Sarah: Doing ballet affords the ability to transcend the moment, both time and place. It starts in the mind with letting the music transport me, and is physically manifested with the concerted use of the body.
What is your favorite thing about EDB?
Kara: The music! I love dancing to the wide variety of classical music and seeing how it lights up everyone in the room.
Sarah: That it opens up the studio to anyone who may have an interest in ballet but previously felt hesitant or nervous to try it. EDB teaches people to know and use their bodies with awareness and presence. Learning to have that kind of control is powerful!
What do you want most for your students when they take your class?
Kara: I hope for my students to feel lifted and inspired from an EDB class with me. Poise, confidence, and zest can all be obtained from ballet and then applied in everyday living. I want people to discover new possibilities for themselves while discovering their own beauty through movement.
Sarah: I want my students to feel seen. I think a lot of people work really hard and feel like it’s never acknowledged. I want people taking my class to know I am watching and am proud of their efforts.
What would you say about ballet to someone trying it for the first time?
Kara: The number one thing I would say to absolute beginners is to be patient with yourself! Anything worth doing takes time and in this modern day of instant gratification, really cherish the process of your own development. Be kind to yourself and enjoy all the layers this beautiful art form has to offer.
Sarah: First of all you showed up; so applaud yourself! Then: give yourself permission not to be perfect. It’s less common to try new physical activities after childhood, so it can be disconcerting as an adult to be confronted with some of the physical challenges ballet can present. Know that it’s normal not to master movements right away, and try not to judge yourself.
What would you like people to know about ballet?
Kara: I would like people to know that ballet is not just for the elite or high brow. There’s so much emotion and beauty which is physically expressed in ballet that almost anyone can enjoy it because it connects to the human spirit. There’s a reason why something’s a classic–Ballet is timeless and never goes out of style!
Sarah: Ballet is complex and offers a lot of depth physically. Often as soon as a dancer feels she has command of a step or dance, she will discover another layer to refine or explore in her body. Perhaps this is why dancers are so good at embracing process; we’re pretty much always working on something physically.
What would you like people to know about you?
Kara: Aside from loving ballet, I am a huge Game of Thrones fan and look forward to Season 6!
Sarah: There’s a stereotype that dancers don’t like to eat, but let me dispel that a bit by disclosing I nurse a strong fondness for cheeseburgers, donuts, and milkshakes. Yes, moderation is the rule of the day, but enjoying the dining experience is part of that. If I want a treat, I eat a treat.
Check out our new instructors on Instagram!
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