Today I got an email saying that Rejoice School of Ballet is offering classes at Hadley Park. My first response was “Yay, finally!” and then God reminded me of how small this dream began.
In 2013 we hired an instructor to lead Dance for Fitness (DFF). I remember interviewing her and asking her if she could incorporate ballet into the workouts. At that time, DFF was supposed to be focused on hip hop and zumba but I had a secret dream to incorporate ballet because it is a dance form that our students don’t usually get the opportunity to engage in. I remember walking into DFF one day and seeing the girls learn first and second position. It made my heart happy.
Although it was not an official ballet class it was a start and honestly things just snowballed from there. We had opportunities to take the girls to Rejoice Ballet performances. They were enthralled by what they saw on stage. My favorite show by Rejoice was Cinderella. They cast an African American in the lead and the girl’s eyes were glued on the stage. One of our students, Harmony, got free tickets (thanks to a generous volunteer) to attend the Nashville Ballet and that sparked a fire in her.
Every time Harmony saw me she would say “Miss Nina, when do I get to do ballet?” She would not let me rest until I gave her a real answer. After some meetings with Rejoice, coordinating volunteers and getting parents on board we were able to put together a summer ballet camp and it was awesome. The recital was precious and I literally cried as soon as the girls got on the stage. I felt a little ridiculous but I didn’t care because I saw a group of rowdy girls transform into graceful and confident performers!
But as my personality would have it, I was still dreaming and wanted more for our girls. I wanted to have ballet classes that happened in our student’s community. After several conversations and emails back and forth with Rejoice I started to wonder if my dream for ballet classes in this community was even possible.
This week I received an email announcing that Rejoice School of Ballet was now holding ballet classes at Hadley Park. This was a labor of love from Rejoice and a result of conversations that started months ago in the library at our Wilson Center. They were passionate about our students being able to come and have now made ballet classes accessible to students living in and around the Preston Taylor Community.
Dreams really do come true at Preston Taylor Ministries. I’m humbled to daily work towards the mission of helping students live out their God-inspired dreams!