“Dancing is the great antidote to mankind’s folly”, declared Cuban dancer and choreographer Marianela Boán, on the occasion of International Dance Day, celebrated every 29th of April since 1982. Multiple studies agree on this, pointing out that dancing improves health and increases one’s self-confidence, among other benefits.
Boán, lives in Santo Domingo, but perhaps she has never noticed the small dance school that Luisanny Acevedo runs in the same city, where more than 70 girls between 7 and 15 years old dream of becoming professionals like her.
Luisanny has been dedicated to the art of dancing for nearly two decades, and she knows how important it is not only to teach technique and practice, but also to offer her students training that goes beyond dancing skills. If it could really fight frenzy, then its values are capable of transforming humanity. “My goal, aside from giving classes, is to transmit values that society has lost”, she explains.
My goal, aside from giving classes, is to transmit values that society has lost”
She adds that in her school, “we have body expression activities so that girls can practice gestures and control stage fright, because ballet strips away that panic, giving them confidence and raising their self-esteem”. In her classes, she also encourages the smallest girls to be imaginative and creative, because she knows that dance is an art that has to be nurtured from a very young age.
That is how she started, turning her passion into her profession: “I love teaching the girls, especially seeing how they develop, how they learn. These things convinced me that this is what I wanted to do, and I opened my academy convinced of that”. She has turned this inspiration into reality thanks to the BBVA Microfinance Foundation and its institution in the Dominican Republic, Banco Adopem.
With economic support and the advice of the MFI’s officers, Luisanny has built a school where girls learn something that goes far beyond dancing: that hard work and sacrifice not only make dancers, but also build the future.