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Where Dance Has Taken Me, Starting With The Dance Collective

By: Veronica Bone

Hi there, my name is Veronica Bone. This past May I earned my degree in contemporary dance and arts administration at Indiana University. This means I am now in my second month of being, what fellow graduates anxiously term, a “real adult”.

I am lucky enough to spend my summer at the place I have geeked out over for the past four years, as I am a Box Office Associate for the Jacobs Pillow Dance Festival. But more on that later, let me tell you a bit about my dance roots.

My first dance class was taken at the Fort Wayne Dance Collective. I was maybe 7 and it was a typical little kid ballet class, followed the next year with a modern class from Liz Monnier. I look back and as an 8-year-old we tackled some serious modern dance. Most of the technique I was only reintroduced when I went to college! I left the Collective for a long while because it was not financially feasible for my family, but the Dance Collective was not done with us! They helped keep my sister and I in classes until we graduated from high school. The community, the inspiring teachers, and the support from Dance Collective was one of the main reasons my dance career didn’t end at the young age of 8.

My dance community only strengthened when I attended North Side High School. In the dance program, under the direction of Kara Wilson, I started in Dance 1 and made my way up to the highest level as well as became a student choreographer. I could not think of this program any higher. This program gave me my first opportunity to dance every day and I was constantly encouraged to make short and long-term goals for myself. Kara always made a point to not only teach us how to dance but to teach us how to be kind and strong people. North Side was the place I became obsessed with dance, and I made some forever friends on the way.

This summer I set out to forge a new dance community in Becket, MA, home to Jacobs Pillow Dance Festival. I was searching for an excuse to spend the summer here and was thrilled when I got an offer for a seasonal box office position. The job itself is not what life-sustaining careers are made of but maybe where they start. In the end this doesn’t matter it was just important for me to be here. Here I can meet lots of arts administrators with successful careers in dance, see artists perform from around the world, take master classes, and all while being in the beautiful Berkshires. I have been here for a week and I get to dance and work five times a week. Life is so good!