Special Needs Program Darby’s Dancers Comes to Ashburn

Ashburn Academy of Dance, now in its 16th year, has announced that it is bringing nonprofit Darby’s Dancers to the studio.

Darby’s Dancers is a nationwide program for special needs children. It was founded by the parents of Darby Jones, who was born with Down syndrome and found joy in dancing. The Darby’s Dancers program is funded 100 percent through donations, enabling special needs children to participate with tuition, costumes and dance shoes provided to them at no cost. Each dancer in the program will be paired with an Ashburn Academy of Dance dancer during the classes.

“We are thrilled to be able to bring Darby’s Dancers to our studio,” said Anne Marie Kimmell, co-owner of Ashburn Academy of Dance. “Parents of special needs children have dealt with so much after receiving a diagnosis, and in many cases parents have to readjust what their hopes and dreams are for their children’s future. A program like this can restore a parent’s lost dream. Seeing their children onstage is so rewarding.”

She said that the Darby’s Dancers program aligns with the dance studio’s motto: “Making great dancers… Making great people!”

“We couldn’t be happier to enrich the lives of more members of our community,” Kimmell added.

Two Ashburn Academy of Dance instructors, Colleen Giardina and Katie Hooper, will be teaching the Darby’s Dancers classes this fall.

Ashburn Academy of Dance offers classes in ballet, tap, jazz, hip-hop, lyrical, contemporary and aerial skills classes. They are currently accepting enrollment for summer and fall classes. Ashburn Academy of Dance is at 21690 Red Rum Drive, Suite 172 in Ashburn. They also offer classes in Purcellville at the Carver Center.

For more information about Darby’s Dancers or any of their other programs, visit ashburnballet.com or call 703-723-8089.

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