The Fordney Foundation wanted to interview ballroom dancers during the pandemic to see how they spend their time. We interviewed Monet Pinkett. See if her answers may be similar to yours!
Freddie Brock: How old are you?
Monet Pinkett: I am 17 years old.
FB: How long have you been dancing and/or taking lessons?
MP: I have been dancing for ten years.
FB: What has this pandemic taught you?
MP: Staying at home has taught me to stay true to my goals, and I’ve been finding ways to work towards them, even if that means dancing in my bedroom. I’ve also learned to appreciate the people I have in my life. Now that I’m not so busy with dancing, I can call my friends and family, and while it’s not the same as in person, I’m glad to be able to hear from them.
FB: What has your school agenda been like? Any thoughts on home schooling
you care to share with our readers?
MP: I have already been homeschooling for the past two years. The only difference is that now I’m meeting with my tutors over Zoom. I originally homeschooled because I wanted to help out with the DREAM program. (As a note, the DREAM program is funded by the Fordney Foundation with Erica Arnold as the instructor). And as a senior, I am saddened that the pandemic prevented the schools from hosting what would’ve been my last showcase.
FB: We know staying away from the studio, your friends and family isn’t easy. What has your “social distancing” journey been like so far?
MP: It’s been difficult to not see people, especially my dance partner, dancing Latin is difficult on your own, but I’ve been taking online classes and have a schedule for myself, so it’s been alright. Although I’m definitely missing the dance studio!
FB: What do you do to keep busy?
MP: To keep busy I’ve been finishing up my schoolwork, taking online classes, and spending time with family.
FB: Have you been taking on-line dance lessons at all?
MP: Yes, I have been taking online dance lessons. I mostly take ballet online because I have a barre at home, but I have done a few Latin classes online but it’s difficult to do a full lesson through a little screen.
FB: If yes, what do you think of the experience? Any on-line dance lessons/classes you can recommend?
MP: I’ve been taking ballet with Shushan Dance Studio, and I’ve really enjoyed the class.
FB: Have you developed any new or surprising hobbies or interests during this time?
MP: Not a new hobby, but I have taken up more journaling and more reading which has been great. I hope to read a lot more even after quarantine is lifted.
FB: Do you have any dance advice to inspire all of our dance friends who are waiting to get back into the studio to resume their lessons like you?
MP: I know ballroom is difficult to do at home, but the advice I would give is to not stop moving. Do some ballet, go for a hike or run, jump rope, or even put on some good music and have a dance party in your room. Another piece of advice would be to write out your goals. Once your goals are clear in your head, you’ll start to find ways to achieve them.
FB: When businesses reopen and people are released from “lock down” what will be your first activity or thing you want to do?
MP: The first thing I’ll do when lockdown is lifted is get a new pair of dance shoes and get back into the studio!
We thank Monet for taking the time to speak to us and hope to see her dancing with her partner again soon!
****We have received contributions from individuals who would like to have a dear relative or friend who passed on remembered that loved to dance or was a dance aficionado. We call these memorial contributions. Perhaps you would like to have someone memorialized in this manner. Make a donation and give us their name. We have on our website a yellow brick road to engrave their name to a brick as a memorial to that person. This contribution will assist future generations of dancers and help keep young people more positive and healthy.
Thought Of The Week:
Commitment leads to action. Action brings your dreams closer. – Marsha Wielder