Keep On Dancing
Audrey Ann Pollock
My Mom Audrey Ann Pollock died on August 4th just three months short of her 84th birthday. Mom was a dynamo. Everything she did in life was approached head-on and with great energy. Her single greatest passion, however, was dance. She took dance lessons as a little girl and in her senior year of high school she had the opportunity to tour throughout the USA performing with a troupe of acrobats and dancers called The Lucky Girls.
Audrey’s touring career ended when she married my Dad, Strickler W. Pollock and they started a family. Within a year or two, Mom found an outlet for her dancing skills by starting Audrey Ann’s School of Dance in Sharon, Pennsylvania, which eventually became Dance Center Studios with studios in Sharon, Mercer, and Slippery Rock, Pennsylvania. In her 50+ years of running the dance studios, Mom taught jazz, tap, acrobat, and ballet to thousands of young girls (and a number of boys, too!). Ironically her own 3 sons never took to dancing, but all 3 of her granddaughters and 3 great-granddaughters have or are presently taking dance lessons in her studios. Audrey sold her dance studios in 2016 after 57 years of teaching and being a mentor and inspiration to the young dancers. (DCS enters its 63rd year of operation this fall).
A Dance Recital is held each summer for parents, grandparents, friends, and other family members to see their young dancers perform. One of the things my Mom always told the dancers before each and every recital was, “Whatever happens when you are on stage – you keep smiling and keep dancing!” Meaning, if your shoe flies off or you split your pants, you keep on dancing.
For all of her dance studio years, Mom instructed the students herself and could do handsprings well into her 70s. Somehow in the early 1970s, she found enough time to help my Dad found the Slippery Rock News Shopper (later to become Tri-County News) and Movin’ Out. After the death of my Dad, Mom took up a new hobby, photography. She enjoyed taking still photos of objects and spent hours editing them in Photoshop. She also excelled at nature and landscape photography. She joined a local camera club and won so many awards, that I began to wonder if she was still welcome as a member there!
Yes, my Mom was a dynamo and now she is gone. She had a life well lived, filled with people well loved. Even though you are gone, Mom – the rest of us will keep on dancing.