A special feature by Katie Davis
We all have our own personal journey of how we found dance. A language without words, it can speak to the masses and inspire an entire world. As dancers, we would be lost without spectacular instructors, such as Alexa Barone, who lead us in our dance journeys. The first Instructor of the Month has helped many members find the fun in dance and to experience a class that is engaging and welcoming. We can’t wait for you to get to know her better and hope to see you in class soon!
KD: Why did you choose to be an instructor at Studio K?
AB: I’m originally from New York, where I taught dance five nights a week. After moving to Florida, I realized I was having SEVERE withdrawals from teaching. I stumbled upon Studio K while taking a dance class taught by a friend of mine. That night, I had been lucky enough to be offered the opportunity to begin teaching there. I’d heard nothing but wonderful things about Studio K, and had a fantastic experience in that class, so I just couldn’t say no!
KD: Can you describe your first experience teaching at Studio K?
AB: My first teaching experience at Studio K was a dream. A huge, beautiful studio room only calls for a huge, beautiful group of people to fill it! That is exactly what I had to work with on my first night. The freedom to present my choreography to a room of eager people that were there for the love of dance and nothing more, was all I needed to know I was in for a fantastic future with the studio.
KD: What classes do you currently teach at the studio?
AB: I currently teach Contemporary and Jazz Funk, with the occasional Heels workshop or Hip Hop class thrown into the mix.
KD: In your opinion, what makes Studio K different from other dance/fitness options?
AB: Studio K allows an entirely different experience from other dance options in so many ways. Its biggest asset, however, is its ability to welcome every dancer, of every (adult) age, with every level of training, and make them ALL feel comfortable at the same time.
KD: What is your favorite class to teach and/or take at Studio K and why?
AB: My favorite class to teach is Contemporary. I love having personal meanings behind my choreography, and I love bringing those feelings out of others. I enjoy seeing a group of strangers telling their stories through dancing the same movements to the same music in such different ways. It is the most heartfelt way to bring a group of strangers together at their most vulnerable state, and it is amazing to be a part of.
KD: What do you love about teaching dance/fitness classes at Studio K?
AB: I love the freedom that Kristin allows her instructors to have with their classes. I’m so fortunate to have her trust placed in me to quite literally walk in and do whatever the heck my body is feeling like doing each week. Her enthusiasm to see each of us bring our own dance personality to the dance floor is what makes each class so exciting.
KD: Is there a class that you haven’t taken yet, but would love to try in the future?
AB: There are SO many classes that I haven’t taken that I’d love to, because Studio K offers SO many. I think my class of choice to get to first would have to be Musical Theater. I’m always told such wonderful things about it, so I’d love to check it out for myself!
KD: What advice do you have for people who want to try dance/fitness classes, but are hesitant/nervous?
AB: Why do you dance? Certainly not to hold back and feel uncomfortable. While we are absolutely bettering our dancing by taking class, I advise everyone to step into a classroom and not strive for perfection, but instead take the opportunity to simply move and release the day. Say what you want to say through your body. Just let go. Dance is something that is supposed to be enjoyable, so why should we stress over having the ability to do that with other people who love it the way we do?! Class is your time to do that! Take it!
KD: In a few words, what does Studio K mean to you?
AB: Studio K means love.
KD: Is there anything else you would like to add about yourself/your time with Studio K?
AB: Teaching dance is so special to me. I only hope the dancers that come to my classes leave with the same feeling I have about Studio K: that it is a safe space to throw my heart onto the dance floor and let a bunch of people take a piece of it home with them.
KD: If you could only eat one thing for the rest of your life, what would it be and why?
AB: A honey barbecue Zinger Mountain Melt with ranch on the side!
KD: If you were going to a deserted island and could only bring three things that are currently in your house right now, what would it be and why? (this could be something practical or sentimental)
AB: My incredible boyfriend (barf, I know!), my Tempur-Pedic pillow, and my candy stash.
KD: Would you rather be stuck in a snowstorm without heat or stuck in a heat wave without air conditioning?
AB: A heat wave without air conditioning. Hello?! I dance outside in Florida for a living, I know how to survive that one.