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Dancing to her dream

Tassarotti wants this studio to focus more on adults and teens that use dance as either a hobby or a form of exercise, which she said would give it a more relaxed atmosphere. The classes will still be exercising proper techniques, but there won't be performances.

For her, dancing can be used as a great way to relieve stress and to stay in shape. There can't be any sort of distractions going on in your head, she said, because you must be focusing on the task at hand.

"It's just different," she said of her classes. "It's a great way to relieve stress. When you dance, though, you can't think about the day at work because you have to concentrate on the dance. You get the fitness portion of it and it clears your mind."

She has been able to create a following from the classes she has taught around the Capital District.

Melinda Taylor, who has been taking lessons from Tassarotti for the past 30 years, said she enjoys learning from her because she makes the classes about the students and not about herself. In her past experience with other dance instructors, this has not been the case.

"She's a great teacher," she said. "I have taken some classes with other people, but it was all about them and how they perform. She could perform but she's more interested in teaching."

Taylor uses dance as a way to get her exercise. It also helps that the music Tassarotti uses is more classical than it is rock, which Taylor finds to be a lot more comforting. She said she is looking forward to the convenience of having the classes in Colonie.

"I think it will be great for Colonie," she said. "It's convenient for a lot of her students. She'll probably get a good draw because she has quite the following. I think it will be a good growth spurt for the studio and dance community."

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