By Claire Salinas
Bambi Pizzolato started taking belly dance classes around 12 years ago, and she quickly fell in love with the belly dance community. After teaching for several years Pizzolato feels ready to open her own studio, Violet Lotus Studio, in Mid-City.
“I’ve been teaching for a while, and I got to the point where I wanted to offer a wider variety of things, and I also wanted to be in the Mid-City area of Baton Rouge, because that’s a thriving arts area in Baton Rouge.”
She believes belly dance is an art form and hopes to help people create that art at her studio.
“My tagline for the studio is, we’re expressing art through movement,” said Pizzolato. “We’re expressing musicality, improvisational skills, and the ability to create art through the movement of our bodies.”
Pizzolato has always loved dance, but never felt cut out to pursue the traditional forms offered to most dancers.
“I’ve always loved to dance, but I was definitely never a ballerina. I didn’t have that ideal ballerina body or the ability to do certain things, so this was a dance form that I could definitely be comfortable in and feel a part of. Belly dance is one of the most inclusive and body positive forms of dance I’ve ever done, it’s open to all sizes, ages.”
Pizzolato hopes the studio will be a sweet escape for people to come and relax after a hard week at work or school.
“Along with offering classes we plan to offer ladies night out classes where people can get out for the night and enjoy themselves,” said Pizzolato. “In the future we may also offer some children’s classes.”
Belly dancing has become a joy that she hopes to share with others.
“I’m excited to grow the community of people in Baton Rouge who do belly dance because it’s a great art,” said Pizzolato “Not only is it a dance form, it’s a sneaky way to get in some exercise, because you’re having fun and you don’t really realize you’re exercising.”
The grand opening celebration for Violet Lotus Studio is set for August 1. The celebration will be complete with belly dancers, food and spreading love for the art.
Pizzolato hopes everyone will feel welcomed into the studio whether they have danced before or not.
“I hope the studio allows people to feel comfortable in their own skin and to really feel comfortable with themselves, and to be able to dance. We want people to know about the art form, and really see the community grow.”
New students signing up for their first class session will get five percent off for that session and those who sign up to be preferred members will pay $25 per year, to get five percent off all their class sessions that they sign up for in advance.
Preferred members will also receive free admission to the Hafla dance parties, which will take place every other month. The studio will be located at 4213 Government St. Suite C.
Those who wish to sign up for classes can contact Pizzolato through her website, violetlotusstudio.com, at facebook.com/violetlotusstudio or email, firstname.lastname@example.org.