Susie has had a love affair with dance for over 50 years. She minored in modern dance at UCLA, graduating in 1971, then proceeded to have a business career and a serious dance avocation. Susie enjoyed 25 years in the evenings and weekends as principal dancer, choreographer and eventually Executive Director of Dance Kaleidoscope of Orange County – a local modern and jazz dance company. They toured with the Bob Hope Hollywood USO to military bases up and down the west coast, and performed educational programs for the Orange County Performing Arts Center. For 12 years, she also enjoyed being an Associate Professor in Dance for Coastline Community College, enriching the lives of adults by teaching modern and jazz dance in the evenings.
And then Susie’s first husband became addicted and died from alcohol, cocaine and Percodan. That traumatic loss changed the direction of her life. She went into the dance studio to heal and came out having choreographed a one-woman performance entitled Legacy of Hope®. She toured this program to over one million youth and adults across the US and Canada for 25 years as an assembly for middle schools and high schools, and as a conference keynote program. Her goal was to reach children and families using dance, drama and powerful personal stories, and help them confront the emotional wounds from living with/loving an alcoholic/addict.
THEN, happily remarried and ready for to get off the road at 62, her life changed once again. She turned to dance to find her way into semi-retirement – this time to teach Zumba dance exercise. She knew once again her purpose was to teach about the joy of being in our bodies through dance – and who better than seniors like her! Susie became a Zumba Gold instructor. Susie says: I found the most amazing, vibrant group of senior students at Custom Bodies Fitness who – like me – weren’t even close to giving up the joy of living loud and energetically. Thus, Seniors Over Sixty Dance Crew was born! I love each and every one of my students – unique, playful, and totally willing to live outside the ol’ box – inspiring young and old.”