July 7, 2018

Dear Parents:

 Circumstances beyond my control have forced me to decide that I must close my studio. The closing is effective as of today, Saturday, July 7, 2018. This was completely unexpected and unanticipated, so the time and resources necessary to attempt to save the school were not available. I looked at several options over the last three weeks and after much evaluation, and also after conferring with respected friends and business associates, I realized that none of the options were viable. There are no words that are adequate for this situation. Therefore, I will close in celebration of and gratitude for sixty-six years of providing quality dance education in Charlotte.

 I have been blessed and privileged to teach hundreds of wonderful children over my thirty-seven year career. Before me, my father and mother taught even more! I have learned more from my students than they ever learned from me. The most beautiful thing is to watch a student evolve over five to ten years. To have the opportunity to see a child move from their first plie’ to mastering a complex combination with skill and artistry, is inspirational and extraordinary. To witness the blooming confidence of a young woman or man as they come alive in class or on the stage is awe-inspiring. 

 With this said, sixty-six years after my father opened his school, Charlotte is now a thriving metropolis with hundreds of choices for dance and the arts. I have always been deeply grateful to you for choosing Sullivan Dance Centre out of the many available options. However, my methodology is old fashioned. The issues that are important to me in terms of teaching children and dance are no longer fashionable or popular. 

 Even in the fourteen years since my mother stepped away from dance, so many changes in the classroom. I often think of how my mother ran her classes. She wore her leotard, skirt, pink tights and pink ballet shoes to every single class she ever taught. Her make-up was always perfect. Her hair was always just right. She commanded attention and respect and always received it. The classroom was a serious place to her and I always tried to carry on that tradition. 

 My mother was the most ethical business person I have ever known and my father was the most confident salesperson I have ever witnessed! I like to think that my strength was motivating and encouraging my students so that they pushed harder and further every day. I made it my life’s work to pull the best out of every single student with whom I worked. Nothing was more rewarding than seeing one of them reach a new goal or step on the stage with a depth of artistry that they did not have before. 

 It is a different dance world today and God has different plans for me than I had for myself. I am walking humbly with that.

 I would love to hear how your children progress. I was looking forward to being a part of that journey for a long time to come, so I am deeply sorry that will not be possible but look forward to hearing of their future successes!

 Thank you from the bottom of my heart for sharing your dancer with Sullivan Dance Centre and for your support during your time here! I will always remember this long and meaningful dance!


Melanie Sullivan-Coyle
Owner/Artistic Director
Sullivan Dance Centre