For three quarters of a century, Steffi Nossen School of Dance (SNSD) has been Westchester County’s premiere dance education destination. With a long history of excellence and a bright future ahead, the non-profit dance school recently launched a rebranding effort to reflect the organization’s fresh, modern approach to dance. A reception unveiling the new website and incorporation of the Steffi Nossen Dance Foundation was held at the school.
The new website embodies the inherent joy and discipline of dance while also portraying the warmth and enthusiasm SNSD conveys to all its students. A light, clean, easy to read format invites users into the site and makes it easy to find information. Images showcase dancers at progressive ages in a classroom and performance settings, emphasizing SNSD’s educationally sound foundation and sequential curriculum for all ages and abilities. The website’s color palette was also softened to accentuate the sophistication of the school.
“With our 75th anniversary upon us, we felt now was the perfect time to reflect on SNSD’s founding principles and reinvigorate our school to ensure we stay current in years to come,” said SNSD Executive Director Jeannie W. Aplin. “More than a fresh face, this rebranding embodies our creative, intelligent and artful approach to dance in all its forms.”
The unveiling also included the incorporation of the Steffi Nossen Dance Foundation, formerly known as the Dance in Education Fund, which was initially formed in 1982 as a not-for-profit dance advocacy and outreach organization. As the parent organization of SNSD, the Foundation strives to share its passion for dance with all members of the community, including underserved populations and those with special needs.
“We believe that the enjoyment of dance is universal and can enrich the lives of anyone it touches,” said Aplin. “The generous contributions we receive from corporations, foundations, and individuals alike enable us to sustain future programming and expand our reach.”
Donations to the Foundation support outreach classes and workshops in the community, annual community concerts and outreach performances, financial assistance and scholarships, artistic and professional support to the community, and the school’s classes for people with special needs. Like SNSD, the Foundation emphasizes the development of body, mind, spirit and character and is committed to promoting the awareness of dance, the opportunity to dance, and enriching the dance environment for students, professionals and audiences.
Immediately following the program, dance instructor Nancy Lushington offered attendees a tour of the school’s Moving Wheels & Heels program. Classes integrate special needs students of all abilities into a safe and supportive environment, allowing them to explore the joy of movement. Funded largely by the Steffi Nossen Dance Foundation with tuition subsidized for students in need, Moving Wheels & Heels combines technique, improvisation and movement to enhance creativity, increase strength and range of motion, and build self-esteem.
While many of SNSD’s longtime supporters were in attendance at the event, the unveiling recognized the steadfast commitment of The Morris and Alma Schapiro Fund as well as Kathy, Wolfe, the school’s first Executive Director.
The Morris and Alma Schapiro Fund is a tax exempt foundation which supports medical, socio-economic, environmental and arts programs in the New York area. The Steffi Nossen Dance Foundation has been supported by grants from this fund since 2004. Current grants support programs, particularly the school’s financial aid and special needs programs, as well as the implementation of an organizational development initiative.
“We are extremely grateful for the generosity of the Morris and Alma Schapiro Fund,” said Aplin. “Through their support we have been able to share the joy of dance with more students throughout Westchester County.”
The reception also recognized the dedication of the school’s very first Executive Director, Kathy Wolfe. Wolfe has played an integral role in the history of SNSD. Having held numerous positions throughout her career, including board member and board chair, Wolfe serves as a role model for many SNSD staff members.
“Kathy has such a passion for the mission here at Steffi Nossen,” said Aplin. “We look to her as an example of a true ‘Steffi girl,’ demonstrating poise, dedication, and philanthropy.”
Wolfe’s daughter and daughter-in-law were in attendance to accept the recognition on her behalf.
Steffi Nossen School of Dance is located at the Music Conservatory of Westchester, 216 Central Avenue, White Plains, NY. They can be reached at 914.328.1900 or by visiting www.steffinossen.org.
About Steffi Nossen School of Dance: Founded in 1937 by dance legend Steffi Nossen, the Steffi Nossen School of Dance offers a strong community-minded and leadership-focused educational model with developmentally appropriate dance instruction and performance opportunities for all ages and abilities. With locations in White Plains, NY and Chappaqua, NY, Steffi Nossen encompasses a range of dance forms including modern, ballet, jazz, tap, hip hop, and world dance forms with special offerings in yoga, pilates and composition. Live musical accompaniment for a majority of classes is offered. The school is owned and operated by the Steffi Nossen Dance Foundation, a not-for-profit dance advocacy and community outreach organization, which seeks to foster the arts in Westchester County. Through the support of the Foundation, the school enables all students, including those with special needs, the opportunity to participate in their extensive programs and classes in a non-competitive environment. A generous financial aid and scholarship program supports those with significant economic challenges. With a sterling reputation in the industry and a rich 75-year history, Steffi Nossen is a leader among dance schools, focusing on the growth of students’ mind, body, spirit, and character.