Dance teacher wins “Arizona Dance Educator of the Year”


Presley Plant

Dance teacher Fara Sadler was presented her plaque after winning Arizona Dance Educator of the Year. Sadler has been teaching dance since she was in college and has been involved with dance since she was in 8th grade.

For over 20 years, Fara Sadler has been teaching dance to students and enhancing the love each one has for the art. She teaches beginning and intermediate dance as well as choreography/improv and is also the instructor for the Moveo Dance Company. After a decade of teaching these classes here, Sadler was awarded by the Arizona Dance Education Organization (AZDEO) and named Arizona Dance Educator of 2021. 

“After spending 2 years as a psychology major I decided to switch gear,” Sadler said, “At that time, I was teaching at a studio…and that kind of hit me that teaching dance was right up my alley.”

Before dancing, Sadler had played soccer and softball for seven years. She started dancing in 8th grade and instantly fell in love. 

“I enjoyed the intrinsic drive to succeed,” Sadler said, “After 10th grade I gave up my cleats and really focused on dance.”

Dance is an activity that requires a lot of emotion and vulnerability. In an attempt to make students more secure and willing to express themselves through movement, Sadler spends a lot of time getting to know her students and allowing them to get to know her. 

“We do a lot of activities regarding ourselves and how we feel,” said junior intermediate dancer Anilisse Cappucci, “which is probably why I feel so comfortable around her and kind of tell her everything.”

Sadler has worked in the Chandler Unified School District for 21 years, but has been teaching at local studios since her freshman year of college. From teaching beginners the basics of dance to planning trips to New York and Boston for Moveo, she has a heavy workload. Despite all the work she has, she always puts her students first and never fails to let them know they can always go to her if they need help, which is likely why she won this award. 

“She works so hard to make sure we all get exactly what we want out of dance,” Cappucci said, “I’m glad she got the recognition she deserves.”

The AZDEO has two awards for teachers: the Bill Evans Excellence in Teaching Award and Katherine Lindholm Lane “Arizona Dance Educator of the Year.” Sadler won the latter, making her the first teacher in the entire Chandler district to win.