Testimonials for The Belly Lab
Here are some testimonials I've been honored to receive - some from my wonderful students, and some from amazing colleagues I've been so lucky to work with.
"Sometimes as a dancer, an artist, you find yourself stuck "in the box," so to speak. You've learned the vocabulary moves of dance, but you find yourself struggling to put them to make a beautiful, cohesive, and alluring story.
Whether you're a dancer, coming back to your art after a break, a newer dancer, just learning to speak the language of dance performance, or an experienced dancer firming up your skills, Amy's intensive course will challenge you and move you.
Amy has a way of speaking to you in an empowering, encouraging way--the way a really close, beautiful friend would. She allows you to reveal the areas of your dance that need improving, expanding, or tweaking. She empowers you to stand on your own two feet, so the dance that you create, truly represents your OWN unique style, instead of merely emulating someone else's art. Amy helps you to identify and overcome your reservations or fear of performing.
This weekend intensive had me digging deep, where I found my own power, and I have (amazingly) become more willing to share it with the world. I cannot wait to do it again next year!"
(Testimonial from the Improv Intensive with James Coy and Amy Danielson)
"Amy Danielson is the kind of teacher who shows you the tools and lets you create the art, right here, right now.
I started going to The Belly Lab at a time in my life where I was creatively “meh”. From the moment I arrived, I felt a shift in myself. I didn’t know anyone in class that night, but I felt at home. We laughed, danced, laughed more, and explored creative ideas from the get go. Amy Danielson has a way of fueling creative living. For me it started with dance, but it has expanded to other areas in my life. I no longer feel “meh” in any capacity – I feel alive. The Belly Lab is a place to discover who you are – and Amy (and the other amazing students!) makes that fun, interesting, and worth every lovely minute!"
"I joined this class because dancing is a personal love of mine, and because I've always admired the intense beauty and deep roots of belly dancing - I was ecstatic to find this opportunity! I immediately felt sincerely welcome and among people that I both admire and enjoy very much - this is a group that I love to laugh with, learn from, and grow with. Amy is a wonderful teacher - I have to rave on this because meeting rare and fabulous people is just that: rare and fabulous! - she is an exceptional dancer; incredibly knowledgeable and experienced in the history and developing world of Belly Dance; wonderfully adept at explaining how to make the brain-body connections happen; and her creative passion is infectious. Amy is always sharing new opportunities and resources for us to continue our own development as dancers and as creative spirits - this is much more than a class, it is a community of beauty and creativity; I am truly thrilled and thankful to be a part of this group of genuine, caring, talented, generous, hilarious, and inspiring friends!!"
When I walked into the Belly Lab I was like a creatively-crippled bird...and from the moment class begun, Amy guided and inspired me through each step, there is truly so much more that really occurs....I was supported to open my wings! And now I feel as if I am flying again...I use to dance avidly in the past and after years of injury and other dedication, I have returned to my first love....dancing and expressing through movement. The entire environment and classmates fill my heart with joy...I feel we celebrate LIFE and the choice to 'move' through many things...and this movement is healing...and has become a peaceful centering of my soul. Besides the 'dance' and amazing friendships & company, the costuming, discipline, and education of dance has also fueled new creative avenues! I am extremely grateful -
Julie Ann Stage/Lehrke
"Dance class with Amy is more than learning where to place your feet and how to turn around. It's a gift of community with others seeking to find joy in movement and music. It's a healing therapy that unifies your heart and body, mind and soul. It's giving your inner child the reins to play again and allow yourself to be free, color outside of the lines, make mistakes without judgement or fear. It's a chance to find that magical place where the right side and left side of your brain can both have equal value. It's extraordinary."
I love the way Amy @ the Belly Lab teaches us to be whole and healthy in the media of dance. I started because I had been recovering from horrible injuries for years, with no hope for living free of pain or expressing myself creatively."
"Amy Danielson is a gifted teacher! Even when I felt totally dorky and inept, she somehow framed things in ways that made me feel capable. I was amazed at how I kept learning things without even knowing it was happening. I had to stop for a bit, but I know I will return. Besides that, Amy creates a real sense of sisterhood and it is heartwarming to be in her space and in her class. We laugh so much! and play and just enjoy being human together."
Lia Falls, student
What I have gotten out of the classes with Amy Danielson ... the motion to move, belly dance style. She's taught me the basics and I've run with it. I feel better about myself than I have in a long time. I've learned to laugh and get away with it! And I've made friendships that will last a very long time.
I have taken belly dance classes in the past with several different instructors. Amy is, by far, my favorite! She is genuinely warm and an excellent mentor. Dancing is my favorite way to exercise and it is a very empowering and spiritual experience. I will keep coming back for more! I came because I love to dance. I stay because Amy has inspired and nurtured a deeper, more meaningful and creative expression of who I am and who I can be with a community of beautiful dancers!"
"I started taking belly dance classes at the Belly Lab just after I turned 39. I was afraid I was too old, or that my body was not the right shape for belly dance, but when I arrived my first day to class and realized there were students from age 20 all the way up to 60 and everyone was of all shapes sizes and abilities, not to mention everyone was so welcoming, I felt so overjoyed! As a part of classes I learned that Belly dance is an art form, a true celebration of the human form. I have enjoyed so many beautiful connections with other dancers, and it has been a healing experience for me to be silly, play and just have fun! Dancing at the Belly Lab has given me a new outlook on living as a woman and honoring my body. I am so thankful to have the sisterhood and opportunity of expression that dancing at the Belly Lab has given me."
Autumn Sunrise, student
"It is hard to explain just what it feels like to have danced for a long time and to have such a safe place to "land." I have landed in all kinds of places over the years and danced with many wonderful people. I feel very lucky for having a place that feels so welcoming and where ideas can be freely expressed and danced! I feel that the dance itself is a healing gift and I do appreciate that. I think that the climate that Amy provides for the students who come is nurturing and encouraging. I really enjoy having this place to "be." I will continue to dance and enjoy this place as long as I can."
Edie Julik, Colleague
Amy is the best belly dance teacher.
"In those first classes with Amy, I laughed at myself—a lot. After class, I couldn’t wait to go back! Class is always a blast. Nine months later, the physical, mental and social activity of dancing is the food that fuels everything else in my life. I am past middle-age but I am closer now to my own strength and grace. And yes, I am still laughing. In class we are all laughing and sharing and discovering our own skill and power and joy!"
Dawn Dunsmoor, student
Amy is a wonderful teacher. She has the ability to break down complicated movements into easily understood pieces. She also has a lot of passion for her art and it shows in how she imparts her wisdom about technique, creativity, and telling a story through dance, music, and costuming.
~Tara Weatherly, owner of Studio Sendero,
St. Paul, MN