State Of The Arts' experienced instructors help dancers of all levels improve technique and build a foundation on which personal style can flourish. Dancers pair private tutelage with four ballroom, Latin-, or swing-dance classes taught throughout the summer. Amid energizing, upbeat music, the one-hour social classes set toes tapping in proper rhythm while instructors help tweak the technique of individual dancers (up to an $80 value). The safe, supportive atmosphere lets unaccompanied dancers find partners and allows couples to dance in an unabashed fashion normally reserved for strangers' weddings. During the two 30-minute private lessons or the one-hour private lesson, dancers work one-on-one with instructors that could include studio founder Keri McLean or her professional dance partner Shane McIntyre (a $70 value). The package is capped off with a two-hour Friday-night social dance party (up to a $10 value), in which dancers can show off refined footwork and feet can proudly display more-coordinated commanders.
Every performer has a different goal. Recognizing this, the teaching staff at Academy of the Arts-Denver (each a professional in his or her respective field) designs all of their lesson plans around their students' individual goals. These highly personalized plans shape the approach to the school's age-specific, professional and recreational group acting and vocal classes. The teaching staff also uses their 75 years of accumulated experience to focus on talent development, whether students want to break into the business, or perform for the joy of it. Private lessons help build proficiency in guitar, bass, drums, and music production. Though lessons focus on specific technical training, the teachers encourage creative experimentation no matter the genre. Former students have established careers in TV, Broadway, Film, and Music. As they learn, Academy of the Arts-Denver's students are also encouraged to take part in rehearsals and performances.
The Denver Center for the Performing Arts is situated in the center of downtown’s thriving theater district. As the second largest performing arts center in the world, the Performing Arts Complex is a drama queen’s (or king’s) nirvana. There are many dazzling spaces within the dramatically designed, glass-roofed complex, including Boettcher Concert Hall, home to the Colorado Symphony; the Temple Hoyne Buell Theatre, which showcases many Broadway touring companies; and the Ellie Caulkins Opera House. In addition, you’ll find a Tony Award-winning theater company, the Seawell Grand Ballroom and many more performance stages. The Denver Center for the Performing Arts also holds events in the Complex’s outdoor Sculpture Park, and hosts community acting classes and educational events at next door’s Newman Center for Theatre Education. The Complex boasts more than 10,000 seats, with exceptional acoustics in every theater, and is a first-class theatrical emporium for cultured audiences.
Arthur Murray Dance Studios has been a leading name in social dance since 1912, when the entrepreneur began selling mail-order dance lessons. Expanding his reach, he enlisted teachers to spread his signature dance lessons on first-class steamships and skyrocketed to fame in the '30s after introducing the public to such dances as the Lambeth Walk and the Big Apple. By the 1950s, Arthur and his wife, Kathryn, were hosting their own highly popular TV show on ABC, the Arthur Murray Dance Party, which ran for 12 years. Today, Arthur Murray's team prepares students for rug cutting at special events and weekend nightclub jaunts. Clients who arrive to lessons partnerless will be paired up with certified instructors. Throughout lessons, instructors teach the foundations of two to four dances from a long list of styles that range from Latin to country-western, helping students to learn basic step patterns, timing, and the ability to lead or follow.
Casual American fare can be found at Comedy Works. You won't find any low-fat fare here, though, so leave some room to indulge. The bar at Comedy Works is fully stocked, so pair your meal with a glass of wine or beer. You'll want to save quiet conversations for another spot, though — the restaurant can get noisy.
Patrons pack the restaurant on weekends, so it's a good idea to make a reservation to ensure prompt seating.
Find a space on the street or park in the lot not far from the restaurant.
Prices are reasonable, with a typical meal running under $30.
For 25 years, World of Dance has taught ballroom dances including the cha-cha, waltz, salsa, and foxtrot to students whose skill levels range from recreational to competitive. The studio’s approach is simple yet effective. Students typically start with one-on-one or group lessons so they can learn techniques and basic body positions. They then apply what they’ve practiced during the studio’s regular dance parties, performing the waltz to demonstrate their graceful new moves or the tango to fulfill their latent desires to chew on roses.