Lauded by the Winnipeg News for their "combination of superb musicality and impressive technique," the members of the Borealis String Quartet have wowed sold-out audiences with their passionate, refined performances of classical compositions. Playing Italian instruments from the 17th and 18th centuries, the young ensemble stirringly interprets works by Raminsh, Mendelssohn, and Beethoven during performances ranging 60–90 minutes before encoring with a rousing rendition of the Macarena. The two violins, viola, and cello weave melodiously within the acoustic haven of Christ Church Cranbrook, an intimate Oakland County venue that has hosted chamber music for more than 50 years. A complimentary candlelight afterglow following the concert allows attendees to personally meet performers and procure autographs on their programs or pocket harpsichords.
An instructor of the Argentine tango, James Valentino moves gracefully, his feet instinctively hitting the floor in time with the music that fills the ballroom. As the owner and founder of City Style Tango, Valentino imparts his grace to dancers of all experience levels during private and group lessons, sharing the secrets of the tango as well as other dancing styles such as swing, salsa, and the fox trot. Beyond the classes for adults or children, James encourages his pupils to show off their skills during student showcases or venture together to local clubs to dance amid the real world's oil-slicked floors.
Attendees of Maple Theater's classic film series, Secret Cinema, only know one thing when they enter the 300-seat auditorium: whether that night's feature was made before or after 1967. Otherwise, every selection is kept tightly under wraps by the series curator and the elves who run the projectors. The rest of the theater's lineup, however, is no secret. Throughout the week, Maple Theater specializes in the latest releases from the world of independent cinema, and features live music every weekend.
After the show, unwind in the theater's bar and WiFi lounge, where 12 taps offer local brews amid elegant drapes and chandelier strands. The bar pairs those pours—plus wines and cocktails—with original American tapas, as well as pretzel bread, veggie spring rolls, and waffle fries. Over at the Great Lakes coffee bar, meanwhile, vintage cameras and projectors surround visitors who stop in for their morning caffeine dose.
When two practiced athletes engage one another in the Brazilian art of capoeira, it’s a sight to behold. At first blush, the practice seems to be some sort of nonviolent martial art with aerial kicks and backflips, though with closer inspection, its underlying influences of acrobatics, dance, and rhythmic problem-solving become obvious, as the two capoeiraistas lock minds in a state of fluid improvisation, rather than competition. The history of the medium intertwines with hundreds of years of Brazilian culture, originating with slaves that were brought from Africa to harvest sugar and tobacco and blossoming into an outlet for cultural expression and political protest.
Baz Michaeli founded The Michigan Center for Capoeira in February of 2007 as a way to introduce the sport to his community and preserve its cultural traditions, garnering attention from press outlets such as the Farmington Observer and Jewish News. Baz is certified as a capoeira instructor as well as a ACSM personal trainer, and challenges newcomers of every ability level to improve their flexibility, endurance, and mental strategizing by participating in a class. The center assembles at the Franklin Athletic Club and Troy Dance Studio, and interested participants should take a look at the calendar for an idea of upcoming class times and locations.
Eisenhower Dance Center gives bodies a jolt of electricity––that extra burst of energy that brings dance to life. Its dance classes train dancers of all ages how to perform the precise techniques of ballet, contemporary, jazz, hip hop, and tap so that they can express themselves in the most beautiful way possible. Summer camps incorporate the basics of creative movement into themed princess and pirate sessions for younger kids and decades or international themes for older kids. As students progress from beginner to advanced to professional, they can move into the touring professional dance company and perform choreographies alongside their instructors at shows around the world.
Arthur Murray has been a leading name in franchise 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. 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.