The professional dance instructors at Ballroom, Etc. suspect that when people say, "I just want to dance," they don't necessarily mean that they want to spend the next five years mastering a series of steps. At the relaxed studio, instructors aim to create group classes and private lessons that embody what's really at the heart of dance—fun. Folks can stop by for group classes and learn the waltz, tap, or modern swing while mingling with other like-minded learners. On Friday night, the studio opens its doors to the public for dance parties, where students and shimmy-curious shufflers can amble in for a night of high-stepping.
The crack team of instructors at Fred Astaire Dance Studio swiftly instills rug-cutting basics in students with a speed-teaching method that demystifies ballroom standards such as rumba, cha-cha, swing, waltz, tango, foxtrot, and hustle. Private lessons hone pupils' moves under direct guidance of a teacher, while group lessons build talents in a more social setting, rotating partners throughout the class. Dance socials and dancers' nights out let students meet one another, practice their craft with new partners, and quietly horde hors d' oeuvres for upcoming attempts at running away from home.
A dancer since age 6, Dasha Sushko founded Ballroom Dream in 2011 after a successful professional dance career in both Russia and the United States. She and her instructors teach fledgling dancers at ballroom, Latin, and swing classes inside Ballroom Dream’s 4,000-square-foot facility, which features a floating hardwood dance floor. Mirrors help students assess their form during group or private lessons, and on every first and third Friday and fourth Saturday of the month, the studio turns up its professional-grade sound system to let students flaunt their newfound form during social dances. Classes are open to adults as well as kids, who discover dance basics during entertaining classes that help expend youthful energy faster than a feverish baseball-card trading session.
The teachers of Dance Factory lead students of all levels through ballet, tap, jazz, modern, hip-hop, acrobatics, pointe, and contemporary dance instruction during their year-round sessions. In addition to teaching students the proper technical skills, the instructors seek to instill good habits and character traits in their students.
The fitness instructors at Exotic Curves Pole Fitness Studio create design and lead sultry pole-dance classes in an effort to boost good health, chisel strong physiques, and bolster self-confidence. Owner and pole instructor Stephanie Mancuso, a dancer since age 7, forged the swirl-inducing dance studio close to her hometown, fusing her love for dancing, her enthusiasm for helping others, and her passion for vintage fireman poles. Utilizing knowledge of a variety of dance techniques—such as Zumba, belly dancing, and chair dancing—the studio’s staff provides a number of steamy outlets to foster streamlined silhouettes and release pent-up energy. Stephanie and her staff also host special events, such as bachelorette parties for brides-to-be and retirement shindigs for nostalgic polecats.
The lime-green and grape-purple walls perfectly echo the vivacious spirit of classes at The Mind, Body & Soul Studio. Instructors lead everything from boot camps and core-strengthening workouts to Zumba and belly dancing, and the intimately sized space fosters a supportive rapport in virtually every session. These classes help attendees live healthier and more active lives by incorporating cardio work instead of just showing them places to abandon vegetables on the edge of town.