"Thank you for everything! You are gift to the community and the children. I admire your gorgeous spirit and the fact that you share your soul gifts every day! I heard from friends of ours during the performance that "this is just one of the best dance performances I have seen in a long time". They didn't even have a child in the show!"
"The children just radiated joy- a true reflection of you and your message. We are so grateful."
"We have valued tremendously the many kinds of learning she has done in dance classes with you for the last 7 years! In addition to becoming increasingly tuned into music and rhythm - not just as a cerebral experience but as a full-bodied one - she has learned about how to assume leadership in a group of her peers that she doesn't know well; she has learned to listen to those peers as well and allow others to lead; and she has learned the joy of being part of something bigger than herself, of working hard on it even beyond the actual work, and of presenting it as part of a connected group before an audience. She also has learned what it is to have a teacher who is so skilled and so creative but also always so patient and kind. What a role model you are for all of these children (and parents!)."
"Tonight I found myself disappointed when the dances ended. I wanted to see more! Once again we were impressed with your originality, creativity, variety of music and movements, fabulous costumes, talent you brought out in the kids (really noticeable in the older two groups!), and the sets which really added to the pieces. I have said to several people over the last week that your dance instruction and performances are on a different level/plane than the other dance schools I’ve seen and tonight proved that I was correct."
"Deborah, you are a gift to us. I know one thing: he loves you. He can't wait for class on Monday, and wonders why he has to wait until Fall for more classes."
"The program tonight was SPECTACULAR! We are so fortunate to have found you."
"The girls have absolutely THRIVED under your tutelage and inspiration, and we will miss you and this unique and beautiful program intensely."
"YOU are amazing, Deborah, and we are so grateful for the presence you play in our lives and for the program you're offering. What a wonderful outlet you provide--physically and mentally, not to mention creative inspiration all the way through! On more than one occasion I've seen my girls offhandedly rolling their heads or floating about the house with a movement you've shared and taught."
"I just wanted to send a note of gratitude for all the work you have put into developing our kids into amazing dancers, choreographers, and dance mates. I must say that my heart did a leap when I saw my daughter performing. I wept throughout most of the piece. I couldn't believe how much her dance has developed. She received many compliments as she walked though the crowds at the reception."
"I love your teaching style and method. I've loved it from the first class I saw. I think you are a most remarkable teacher and that what you give to the students in your classes is much much more than dancing (which by itself is fantastic). you teach them about creativity, about collaboration, about compromise...there is so much. It's really wonderful and extremely valuable life learning. As an educator I absolutely love what you give to the students."
"I have been hearing for years now how much people love you, and now I get to know why. Your passion for dance and for uplifting your students was so beautiful. I'm a teacher too and I strive to be positive and build students' skills and confidence from wherever they are. Thank you for holding these young people in their joy and vulnerability!"
"One of the very best parts of my two daughters’ respective childhood experiences has been dancing through the years in Deborah Abel's school. My daughters have always loved going to their dance classes at Deborah's studio, week in and week out, year after year. Deborah inspires this feeling by her brilliant teaching style, as she is warm and also asks a lot of her students. They willingly give themselves in return, the love flows freely, and great things happen, consistently…."
"Year after year, the student performances at the end of the year, from those of the very youngest kids through the high school classes, have a completely extraordinary quality of freshness mixed with precision, of open~hearted, pure joyfulness of expression combined with seriously high standards and tons of genuine creativity. The performances, in my experience of them over more than eight years now, are always aesthetically really satisfying, peak experiences for performers and audience members alike."
"The “messages" of the dances that Deborah and students create, as expressed in the moves, music, settings and costumes chosen, are consistently messages of love, inclusion and harmony, often punctuated with humorous notes. Choreographed collaboratively between Deborah and her students, the children clearly own these dances themselves. Also, each and every child is shown as a shining member of every dance. So the process and the product are beautifully consistent in this way, too, as they are both egalitarian and excellent at once."
I wanted to let you know how much I admire your teaching style. It is beautiful to witness how you are able to give a critique as well as great positive feedback. As a former early childhood educator, I am always so happy to watch a gifted teacher. As an aside, I wanted to share a beautiful experience I had with my grandaughter. She decided, on her own, to choreograph a dance for her and I to do (she knows I love dance). She was such a model of you! She started with warm ups and gave me feedback along the way - “point your toes and flex to the front, side, back" etc... she then instructed me in parts of the routine (she choreographed) and added more when she was sure I knew each part and did it correctly. She took notes and told me the goal was to have no notes! She gave me sincere praise along the way. It so made me smile to realize how much she had learned from you.
At one point she even offered, “I’m doing teaching the way Deborah does!" She even offered me hair ties!
What gifts you have given your students and I am truly grateful to have witnessed it.
I really wanted to share this story since you were the catalyst.
Thank you so much for all you do from a special place in my heart.