From dream to reality — Miss Monet’s Dance Studio for all ages

  • Shaiana Flores opened Miss Monet’s Dance Studio at 460 Main St. in October. Her students will be performing a movie-themed recital on Saturday, June 8, 5:30 p.m. at the Athol Town Hall. Athol Daily News/Kathy Chaisson

  • Inside Miss Monet's Dance Studio. —Athol Daily News/Kathy Chaisson

  • Inside Miss Monet's Dance Studio. —Athol Daily News/Kathy Chaisson

  • Inside Miss Monet's Dance Studio. —Athol Daily News/Kathy Chaisson

Staff Writer 
Published: 5/28/2019 9:08:21 AM

ATHOL — Her passion for dance blossomed from the time she started tap and ballet classes at the age of 18 months. Now, Shaiana Flores is able to share her knowledge and love for dance at her studio at 460 Main St. “This has been a dream of mine since I was very young,” she said.

Miss Monet’s Dance Studio, which opened in October, caters to both children and adults, offering tap, jazz, ballet, hip hop and contemporary dance. She currently has 34 students who are rehearsing for a movie-themed recital, to be held at the Athol Town Hall. They will be performing 13 numbers with a theater set on Saturday, June 8 starting at 5:30 p.m.

Flores, who was born and raised in Leominster, has been competing since age 7. A shelf lined with trophies and medals that she won for dance competitions is on display in the reception area. She started teaching dance at age 16, danced at Dance Arts Centre in Fitchburg for 18 years and for the last five years taught at Just Dance! Performing Arts Center in Gardner.

The energetic mother of two also works part-time as a medical assistant at Heywood Hospital. The only time she has ever taken off from dancing was for six months because of a knee injury from a car accident. Undeterred, she got back into it. “Just like riding a bike,” she said.

The studio is named after Flores’ middle name, Monet, one of her mother’s favorite painters). It has been undergoing renovations by her husband, Jordan Flores, who added two studios, one a 20 foot by 26 foot room, and the other, 16 foot by 35 foot. Flores used her crafting skills to create a children’s play area in the waiting room. She also plans to sell dance wear and have costumes available on clearance.

Flores is working toward offering a discount to Athol students and is in talks with Athol Community Elementary School about setting up an after school program in the 2019-2020 year where she would go to the school. 

Flores is also working toward becoming Acro-certified. Acro combines gymnastics with classical dance. She’s also considering becoming Zumba-certified and is hoping to offer kickboxing for adults. The studio can also be reserved for birthday parties.

Flores will hold summer dance camp from July to August with programs for ages 2 ½ to 17. She will host an open house some time in the next couple of months, with a date to be announced. Her students will perform during the First Friday events on Main Street in July and August.

Drop-in classes are $10 for 45 minutes, which is less expensive than some other studios, according to Flores. “It’s not about looking to make money,” she said. “I want it to be affordable for every child who wants to dance.” Family discounts are also available.

“It really warms my heart to see them in the studio and come running up to me because they can’t wait to see you and are looking forward to dancing,” Flores said. It’s also a good place for them to “just let it go” and unharness their energy. “I feel like this should be their happy place.” 

From experienced to novice, all ages are welcome. Children at the crawling stage can be enrolled, and there are two women who are signed up for her prenatal dance class.

“This is my passion,” Flores said, “and it will be with me forever.”

Miss Monet’s Dance Studio is open Monday through Wednesday, 4-7 p.m., Thursday, 4:30-8, and Saturday, 9:30-12.

More information can be found on Instagram, Facebook and www.missmonets.com, by calling 978-320-1779, or emailing info.missmonets@gmail.com.


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