We ALL know that this year has been anything but rainbows and butterflies. Small, and even medium and big, businesses are feeling the brunt of this global crisis.
We know that our small, suburban, family-run dance school, is just one tiny speck in our big giant planet that is currently crashing and burning.
But the thing is, those four walls in Epping, those mirrors, that barre, the staircase and the mezzanine that we fought so hard for, the pictures your kids drew for us that are stuck up on the wall and THEM, their smiley faces, their laughs, their tears….those things are our world. Our whole world.
This is not just business for us. This is where our own kids dance. Where 14-year-old Chloe discovered a passion for teaching and eventually became “co-principal” alongside Kristie and Carla. This is where we watch our students work hard and turn into assistant teachers and then teachers themselves. This is where Nakarin felt at home. And where we celebrated his Australian citizenship. We’ve helped write resumes and provided reference letters. We’ve given advice and taken it too. We’ve celebrated all of your success and we’ve felt all of your loss. We’ve announced babies and engagements here and we’ve cried tears of joy and tears of angst too. We’ve cheered for every milestone and cheered for every milestone that was just missed. This is where we show up after the longest and hardest days and let it all go. This is where we feed our children, where we chuck our dinner in the microwave and get on with it, where we do homework, where our family shows up unannounced, where our family shows up when we need them. It’s where we have quiet cups of teas and loud, passionate “discussions ” too. Where we catch up with friends because our work and social life are all intertwined. This dance school is so much more than a small business. For one thing, it is HUGE in purpose and impact. It’s our whole world. And we hope, at least a big part of yours or your child’s world.
In term 1 2020, we opened our doors to our anticipated biggest year ever. MSF was thriving. Classes were full, the parent lounge wall to wall with happy, chatty, parents and kids. We felt like a full-time call centre because our phone was constantly buzzing and if we weren’t answering calls, we were replying to emails.
Numbers were never important to us but, we did celebrate when we reached an incredible 300. 300 enthusiastic boys and girls of all ages were filling our world with even more dance and even more purpose.
Then covid hit and in that last week, before the restrictions were announced, the studio felt eerily quiet. Not the calm before the storm but the quiet after.
In term 2, like many dance schools and with little choice, we moved online. 85 students joined us on zoom to trial our classes and 62 enrolled…
The prospect of term 3 returning to face-to-face classes was exciting! We had held out hope that our dance family would come back to us and we were right. We had 200 kids ready to return to dance and a huge number who were waiting in the wings, riding out the wave. Then lockdown 2.0 came crashing in like a tsunami.
It’s now time for us to resume online classes and so far we have 30…30, important, special, valued individuals who will join us for class online. Just 10percent of our term 1 family. This is the smallest student base we have ever had. Even smaller than our first year back in 2007.
Dance family, we need you now more than ever.
The simplest way to support our dance school is to enrol into our online classes if you can afford it. This way, you are also supporting the physical and mental wellbeing of your child and their dance progression. Not only will you be making a small financial contribution to our school but you will be helping our community to stay connected, to stay as one.
We know that the structure of online learning does not suit everyone. If it’s not for your child or they are not interested, we understand. We don’t want to pressure them into doing something they don’t want to do.
We know that an overwhelming majority of our families are experiencing some form of income loss or employment loss. We don’t want you to spend money on dance classes if you can not afford to.
What we don’t know is how far will we get, without the continued support from YOU our big, extended dance family.
So, if you won’t be continuing your dancing online, there are other ways you can show your support and help us see through this crisis to the other side.
- Please follow and keep engaged with our Facebook and Instagram pages.
- Please share our post about online classes (or any of our social media posts) on your Facebook and Instagram pages
- Tag people who you think might be interested in online dancing
- Tag people who might be interested in dancing at the studio when this is all over
- Leave a review on our Google or Facebook page
- Upload a photo of you/your kids at an MSF event
These gestures might seem small but they will make a huge difference to us. We are so grateful to every single MSF student and parent. Whether you’ve danced all the way through iso or we haven’t seen you since term 1. Even if you’ve just been keeping up to date with our emails, we are thankful. Hey, if you’ve come this far on the longest social media post ever, that says a lot!!
We said in a recent email, this year has been a rollercoaster. And it has, but one that has broken down right before the free fall and left us hanging. Stomach-churning, heart in our throat, we are just hanging out here looking out over the world. OUR world and that’s you, our dance fam. 🧡
With lots of love, we hope to see you on the dance floor soon.
The MSF Sisters,
Kristie, Carla and Chloe. xx