← Back to Blog

Reflect. Rejoice. Renew.

A blog post dedicated to Fort Wayne Dance Collective’s 40th Anniversary!

What do you say about an organization that supports everyone, no matter their age, ability, or race, in their efforts to create? What do you say about an organization that strives for excellence every day? What do you say about an organization that promotes wellness from the inside out?

It is impossible to cover the history and emotions of the past four decades, but here are a few sentiments from the beautiful voices of the FWDC family.

Fort Wayne Dance Collective has worked with dozens of community partners in the past 40 years. Through our relationships, we have positively impacted hundreds of thousands of citizens in our community.  The breadth of our impact with community partners has been possible from the encouragement, believe, and documented research that dance education can improve individuals mental, physical, and social health. – Elise Alabbas, FWDC Executive Director

For 40 years I have always celebrated the date of January 23! For many years there was such uncertainty about making it from one year to the next that when the January date would hit there would be such joy and a feeling of accomplishment that we made it one more year. So, as Fort Wayne Dance Collective hits the big FORTY mark, it’s safe to say that with continued diligence, we’ll be around for a long time to come. – Liz Monnier, FWDC Founding Member and Teaching Artist

To know that FWDC has been around for 40 years making such a difference in our community is so heartwarming to me. I think of all the students that we have touched, in both large ways and small, and wonder about the ripples that those moments have created. I have had the privilege of seeing so many people discover their ability to move and dance and see the magic that they are capable of creating. I have seen and been a part of a group of people working together to create something bigger than any of themselves as individuals would be able to do alone. That to me has been something that I have always held dear- that as an artist and a teacher, I am not alone. We are all working together to make this community of ours a brighter and happier place. – Gloria Minnich, FWDC Teaching Artist and Touring Co. Member

Every day I am overwhelmed by the profound work this organization does for the community. I am humbled by the unique individuals that share their love for the arts through FWDC’s programming. Upon FWDC’s 40th year I will reflect on where we have been as an organization. I will rejoice and celebrate what we have accomplished as a collective. And, I promise to renew our commitment to serving Fort Wayne through diverse arts programming that deeply moves, empowers, and inspires. –  Mandie Kolkman, FWDC Artistic Director


Please join us for our upcoming celebration! RSVP today!