Certified Tribal Belly Dance teacher Heidi Wunder embraces every creative aspect of her art, from its empowering twirls to the traditional hip scarves that she crochets herself. She welcomes women of all ages during her classes, where she tutors tummies on the low-impact, largely improvised dance style. The form's various cues allow participants to step in unison without planned choreography or flowcharts taped to their foreheads. Because of the dance's social element, Heidi views her 2,000-square-foot space as a venue for guests to make lasting bonds while they discover their potential for strength and grace.
Heidi also handmakes many ornamentations to complement her students' routines. Custom-sewn clothing and spiraling henna patterns comprise striking tribal ensembles.
Tell us about your business.
Leap of Faith Dance is a Christian dance studio that offers ballet, tap, jazz, lyrical, hip hop, musical theater dance, pointe, tribal funk, modern, contemporary, and leaps and turns. We also offer non-dance courses in art, piano, voice, Pilates, strengthening and tumbling. We have "Little Dancers" classes for 3-5 year olds, beginning through advanced classes for school-aged boys and girls, as well as classes specifically for adults. Our performing company, "Parables Dance Company" gives our advanced students extra opportunities to use their talents to reach out to our community.
What makes your business stand out?
_We use all Christian music in our classrooms and performances. However, we welcome students from all religious backgrounds. Our students wear age appropriate, beautiful, yet modest costumes. We perform a Christmas Outreach and Spring Dance Concert every year. Each of these is free to all attendees.
All of our instructors have degrees in dance and/or professional dance backgrounds. Our students are taught to be kind and inclusive of others. Rather than the "dog eat dog" atmosphere found in many dance studios, our students are expected to be encouraging to one another. We specialize in ballet technique and stress excellence with humility to our dancers. We have three large dance rooms with floating floors to prevent dance injuries, each with viewing windows._
What inspired the owner to start this business?
We started with a small group of home-schooled students who wanted something different in dance instruction. They weren't happy with the music, moves, dress and attitude at schools they had seen. We decided to take the "Leap of Faith" and start a school that would be both excellent technically and spiritually. Since our beginnings in 2000, we've grown to include dozens of classes, students from all school settings and backgrounds, and countless performance opportunities.
What is your most popular offering?
Our twice a week ballet classes are our most popular classes, closely followed by our lyrical classes. We teach classical ballet technique in an encouraging environment. Our lyrical jazz classes are loosely based on ballet where dancers interpret the lyrics of a song through movement. Beginning and recreational levels of all our classes are open to anyone. Advanced levels of dance require enrollment in regular ballet technique classes.
What is the best reaction you’ve ever gotten from a customer?
One of our dads wrote: "I just wanted to send you a note to commend you for the work you have done with our children. The recital this afternoon clearly set a new standard of excellence for the Leap of Faith dancers! I was so impressed. Being a typical guy, I don't normally get excited about dance—it's probably not something I would take any interest in if my daughter was not involved in it. But, Sunday's performance would have captured me even if [my daughter] had not been a part of it. Something has happened (in no small part because of your instruction and passion) to take the dancers to the next level."
Handicap Accessible: No
Staff Size: 11–25
Parking: Parking lot
Most popular offering: Our ballet classes and lyrical classes
Pro Tip: When choosing a level, choose on the lower side and we will evaluate and move you after one class.
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