Ali Azarvan volunteered for 25 local non profits in May and shares his chronicles:
One of the greatest things about my May Days campaign is that it has exposed me to things (and people) I would not normally be exposed to. Library Dances is the perfect example. Outside of watching a couple of my nieces’ ballet recital, I know nothing about this world. Well, outside of my nieces’ recitals AND the 2 hours I spent watching “Black Swan”. So, basically, all I know about ballet is that it’s adorably cute (my nieces) and there’s a lot of blood (“Black Swan”).
Enter Cecily Stewart. I was introduced to the brilliant and talented gal through a mutual friend, Kaitlyn. Cecily is the founder, director, choreographer, head fundraiser, marketing specialist, and, well, I think you get it. She basically wears every hat for this amazing organization.
After watching The State Street Ballet perform “Beauty and the Beast” when she was only in the 2nd grade, she was inspired to pursue a dance career. After living on both coasts and dancing with several professional dance companies, she moved back to Santa Barbara and joined the group that inspired her to take this exciting path – The State Street Ballet.
Cecily wasn’t satisfied merely doing what many girls dream of (dance professionally), she wanted to make a bigger difference. She wanted to expose those who wouldn’t have otherwise been exposed to dance. But she wanted to put a special (and brilliant) twist. Here’s her model – Schools teach literature. . . dance teachers teach dance. She wanted to combine the 2 and create a professional dance based on students’ required reading. So simple. So smart. In this model, a child truly understands the dance piece. It’s no longer just a bunch of people “dancing around”. There’s a story. There’s true meaning. Continue Reading →