A Promising Partnership: Two North Salem Alums Go Into Business
Liz Morley and Domonique Danza are bringing a different kind of healing to the people of Danbury, Connecticut. Morley has recently joined Sage and Sol Massage Therapy, a massage business that Danza has owned for six years.
Danza shares the office space with her sister, who runs a skin esthetics suite. She had a vision of expanding her office and clients, but that didn’t seem possible without some help. Once Morley signed on to work with her, Danza saw the expansion of her business as more of a possibility. “Having Liz helps capitalize on my ability to expand and grow as a business,” she stated.
Danza and Morley met as students at North Salem High School. Although they’d see each other on the bus and shared mutual friends, they themselves didn’t interact much. While she was a freshman at North Salem High School, Danza worked at the Brewster Physical Therapists office as a PT aid. “I saw so many success stories'' she explained, adding “It’s a really gratifying feeling seeing people come out of their sessions more relaxed, confident, and knowledgeable about their body and what their body needs.” What started as just a job became a big interest of Danza’s.
After graduating high school, Danza studied at the Finger Lakes School of Massage in Mount Kisco, New York. Once Danza received her degree, she joined AON physical therapy where she assisted the sports physical therapists for four years. She then became an aid to the physical therapists at Hartsburg Chiropractic in Danbury, Connecticut. In 2019, Danza started her own massage therapist business, Sage and Sol Massage Therapy and Wellness.
Morley took a very different route to the massage world, but all of the experience she’s had has equipped her with the necessary skills for this new business venture. After receiving a fine arts degree from Buffalo State College, Morley began working at Organic 3 Cafe in Buffalo. She considered attending culinary school but found more of an interest in yoga and wellness, which was something that her coworkers introduced her to.
In 2016, Morley took a 200-hour yoga class at Liberation Yoga in Mahopac, where she learned the philosophy and the metaphysical side of yoga. “It was just dipping my toe into the world of yoga, it was a nice introduction to it all,” she noted. The following year, Morley attended the Finger Lakes School of Massage. However, that same year, her father tragically passed away. In December 2018, Morley’s mother was diagnosed with stage four stomach cancer, and Morley’s focus shifted to her mother’s recovery.
In January 2020, Morley took the 300-hour yoga training which went into more depth on the metaphysical side of yoga. However, in order to keep her mom safe during the pandemic, Morley didn’t take on much work and feels she is just now moving forward with her career.
Once she completed her 300 hours and the pandemic had died down, Morley worked for Liberation Yoga, Eprivados spa in Somers, and did some house call massage sessions. In these roles, she gained experience and an interest in the metaphysical side of yoga and moved towards massage therapy. A lot of yoga instructors she worked with were massage therapists, which opened the door for her into this new interest.
Last spring, Danza reached out to Morley after seeing some posts about massage therapy on her social media. The two reconnected on their shared interest. “It's funny that after all these years, we’re just reconnecting now,” Danza said lightheartedly.
However, Danza believes that this partnership did not just appear by luck. “I feel that it was meant to be, I don't believe in any kind of coincidences,” said Danza.
Morley believes that providing a place to heal or escape the stresses of the world is needed now more than ever. “The past three years for everyone have been incredibly stressful, it forced people to go inside of their own being,” she said, adding, “massage therapy is self care, its self love.”
Danza hopes that through her sessions, she can “show people how to strengthen your relationship with yourself. Taking an hour to be still and introspective allows the body to heal.”
Danza approaches healing with a unique perspective. When clients come in for a treatment, Danza looks at their body language, the tone of their voice, and the way they carry themselves for an indication of the treatment they need. “If someone is stressed and they aren’t making eye contact and have a monotone voice, doing a deep tissue massage might cause more stress than healing,” she explained.
Each client is so personal and requires a specific treatment. Morley and Danza believe that their form of treatment is very intentional and personal, which is what sets their massage business apart from others. “There's a lot of ego in this profession; what makes Dom and I different is we are both very grounded, we are humble, we love what we do and people can feel that. It's pure from the heart,” explained Morley.
Danza specializes in deep tissue massages and abdominal assessments or lymphatic drainage.
“It all relates to the function of your organs,.I believe this kind of treatment is what is most helpful for the majority of my clients,” she said.
Morley offers craniosacral therapy, which is a hands-on, energetic technique that works on the nervous system. She also offers prenatal massages and cupping.
Danza believes that this is such a successful and beautiful partnership because of how much she and Morley challenge each other to be better. “We push each other to continue our education and put ourselves in rooms that we will grow in. We're the little fish in the big pond so to speak, in the room with doctors and surgeons and we come out of it smarter,” she added.
“She and I have a similar vision. We both wanted a healing space, like a wellness center. Working together, we are stronger because we bring different things to the table. We really are balancing each other out,” Morley agreed.
Danza and Morley hope that their partnership continues to be fruitful and will push both of them to be the best version of themselves. They are grateful for their time at North Salem High School and believe they might not have crossed paths otherwise. “I think that's what is so great about growing up in a small town. If it was a big school, Domonique and I might not be where we are now,” insisted Morley.
To schedule an appointment at Sage and Sol Massage Therapy and Wellness, Call (203)-788-1114 or email email@example.com
This article has been updated from a previous version that incorrectly said Domonique Danza and Liz Morley attended Finger Lake School of Massage in Ithaca, NY. She in fact attended the Finger Lake School of Massage in Mount Kisco. We regret the error.