When I was a little girl, I wanted to be an artist. I dreamed to be a person so talented and versatile, always on stage, telling my story through dance and acting. Naturally, as almost all of us, as I was growing up, I strayed a bit from those aspirations. However, dance and acting is something I love and still feel passionate about. There is one place in Belgrade that no matter your gender or age, will awake your artistic side and make you feel like everything is possible. It is a place where I have made my first dancing steps and numerous debuts on theatre stage. It is a school of not just dance, but discipline, hard work and life. It is a famous cinema, theatre and club, always so lively and entertaining. Allow me to present you, sometimes forgotten, Akademija 28(Academy 28) in Belgrade.
Akademija 28 in Belgrade is known for its numerous performances offered. There are always the latest cinema projections as well as theatre plays offered on a daily basis. During the day, you may enjoy in the best coffee in the area, sun and outdoor garden. You will see people around you, laughing and loudly talking. You might even meet some of the famous actors. At night, Akademija 28 café is a great spot to listen to some lively music, enjoy in the bohemian interior, and have a delicious bite over a drink. However, starting from the first floor of Academija is where all the magic begins and where all the hard work behind the scenes happens.
I first visited Akademija 28 when I was less than 8 years old. I always looked at dance performances with such an admiration, enchanted by the magnificent dancers. When I was 12, I took the courage and came to the first class of modern and classical ballet. Smiley, kind and lovely face of a beautiful blond lady approached me. I was still feeling excited as I thought I would not fit in the group and that I am simply not talented enough. She encouraged me to join the group that was fit for my age, and gave me a very warm welcome. After first class, she was surprised with my flexibility, talent and eagerness, which I recall, meant the world to me. However, she reminded me that nothing happens without hard work and practice. I remember myself working out afterwards every day at home for weeks, making sure to be ready for classes. Despite the fact that dance was my hobby, I took the words of my teacher very seriously, as she has that captivating power on students. Her name is Boniela. She is a professional ballerina. She is strict, diligent, passionate, engaged but at the same time supportive, encouraging, kind and protective. Over the years of classes, laughter and tears she became my dear friend, even after I have stopped dancing. Unfortunately, other things got on the way. Even when I went to study abroad her words:"Pazi sta radis!"(Be careful) are constantly stuck with me. Those classes became not just my leisure time activity, but an amazing opportunity where I have learned a lot about life, ambitions as well as met new friends and people who have marked my life in a remarkable way. Akademija 28 became a place I always love to pass by, as it reminds me of my innocent, childish days, where I thought there are no boundaries. I hope for you Akademija 28 will be a glorious place, where dreams come true.
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