Born Dancing: A place all abilities are invited to dance

Posted at 6:08 PM, Jul 01, 2019
and last updated 2019-07-01 18:08:07-04

UPPER EAST SIDE — It's described as pure magic!

Born Dancing incorporates people of all ages and abilities into an inspirational night of modern dance.

Melissa van Wijk, who created Born Dancing, says the program is for everyone.

“We are integrated with and without disabilities," van Wijk said. T"he disabilities can range from cerebral palsy to dancers who are deaf and others who have no visible disabilities like autism.”

Van Wijk created this program for students who may not have access to dance classes and wanted to integrate them into performances with professionals and beginners. Dancers range in age from 8 years old to 70 years old.

Janet Nightingale has been in several performances.

“I’m learning a lot! A old as I am, you never stop learning,"  Nightingale said. "It's amazing. It's a blessed experience for me.”

The performances are not only leaving a mark on the dancers but also on the audience.

“We get a lot of tears,  we make people cry it’s what we do in the best way, I hope.”

Born Dancing has two performances a year. The next one will be coming up in the fall.

As for auditions, they are not traditional. Van Wijk says she wants to make it happen for anyone who wants to dance.