Teri Richardson
Co-Founder and Teacher, GeneRaTion DCD

Newsletter: February 28 – March 14, 2018

Can you tell us a little bit about what you do?
GeneRaTion DCD is my daughter Amanda, my mother Lynne, and myself (Teri) teaching the three things we love–dance, art, and child development classes. We believe in helping young preschoolers with school readiness as well as developing friendships, social skills and self esteem for all ages including our youth and adult community. We taught all these classes at Burbank Parks and Recreation department for eighteen years. After a while, our students wanted a bigger space and more classes. Along with their families, our students not only raised all the money to get us our studio, but they all pitched in to help build it together. They donated their time, skills, and materials so that we could be debt-free and keep our classes affordable like the Parks and Rec. So really we think of it as their studio. Here we have a community of eighteen-month-old children to ninety-nine-year-old adults; it is about families and different generations coming together. A year later they still water the flowers that they planted, taking as much pride in watching them grow as we do in watching our studio and families grow.We pride ourselves on our teacher assistant program. Teaching responsibility and independence to children as young as five years old–we teach them how to warm up a class, run a class, choreograph, clean bathrooms, sweep, run the computer programs and how to greet people. They take pride in wearing our assistant t-shirts because they earned it. So this studio is very much run not only by us, but by the people who take our classes too. “DCD” stands for “dance,” “create,” and “discover.” My daughter teaches dance and represents the “dance” part–hip hop, ballet, jazz, choreography, etc. Through art my mother teaches school readiness and creativity, and represents “create.” I also teach dance and art, but also have a love for teaching the little preschoolers–the “discover part” which includes teaching mommy and me school-readiness type classes. Our classes are affordable for the whole family, and our studio is a safe place for kids and everyone to dance, create, and discover.My daughter Amanda has been working with the Burbank Parks and Rec since she was 12, and with the schools since she was 16 years old, teaching dance and choreographing for the show choirs in the middle schools and high schools in Burbank as well as other California and out of state schools. My mom Lynne works for the schools in Orange county as well. I also partner with schools and teach dance. We have a love for teaching youth, as you can see!

How did you first become interested in art?
I started as a mother teaching my daughter, like my mother showed me. My mother is a professional artist, and my daughter is a professional dancer and choreographer. We are three generations teaching other generations what we love.

How do you think art can enrich our community, and what are some ways people can become engaged with art in Burbank?
I am also part of the Random Act of Kindness Foundation. As a RAKtivist, we do free kindness raids in our community which is a good way to love and bring community together. For instance, we’ve done things like make four hundred valentines for members at the Josyln Center, and six hundred thank you cards for our Burbank Fire Fighters after our fires last year.. . . we also flashmob “Thriller“ throughout our city for free to support local schools and businesses. Things like that encourage people to love their city and community while interacting and having fun together.

If you could share with our community one thing about art, what would it be?
One thing that I’ve learned is that creating art provides a distraction, giving your brain a break from your usual thoughts and responsibilities. When I’m dancing, I don’t think about all the bad things going on. It’s your happy place.

To find out more about Teri’s work, visit http://www.generationdcd.com/home