Lee Nolting Obituary, Death – The passing of Lee Nolting was the first thing I heard when I got up this morning. Her wall is covered with condolences written by bereaved former pupils who speak about how she inspired them and, in some cases, saved their lives via dance when they were young. She began her career as a dancer and was a member of the group The Gold Diggers. Later, she transitioned into teaching and is undeniably an integral part of the foundation for many people’s careers as well as the rise and success of COCA as a center for dance education. Lee was both a rule follower and a rule breaker. She was also a pioneer in the field of dance education. Even though she was warned that it was a risky move, she continued to drive pupils to and from school.
During the time that I was producing “Becoming Emily,” which was about the violent attack on abortion care provider nurse Emily Lyons, she linked me with several COCA students who were willing to perform in our play, supporting it and its themes despite the possibility of controversy. She told me not to worry about the shortage of rehearsal space, which is a persistent problem for so many of us, and then she provided space after I told her how hopeless I felt about the situation.
And this was not a production by COCA at all. Or even a co-production, but it was irrelevant because neither option mattered.
She was not concerned with controlling access. I was known to her. She was aware of the goals we were working for. Because she saw this as an opportunity for both her kids and the community as a whole, she took the initiative to make things happen.
She came to some of our practices and was enthusiastically encouraging and pleased with the performance of both our group and her many pupils.
She exemplified all of the qualities that make for an excellent educator. Combining rigidity with flexibility. Insistent and openly displaying their emotions. brimming with affection and overflowing with pride My thoughts and prayers are with her sister, as well as all of her students, coworkers, and friends. However, what a legacy to leave. I really hope that she was aware of how much love and appreciation she received. I really hope she was aware of everything she had done.