Portland Festival Ballet's artistic director, John Magnus––whose career has touched down in the world of South African dance as well as the prestigious Joffrey Ballet School in New York––headlines a cast of performance-arts instructors and serves as the architect behind the organization's lively, world-class productions. Their seasoned coaches prepare fledgling hoofers and thespians to face the crowd through a schedule of acting and dancing classes for kids, teens, and adults. During breathtaking performances that have included The Nutcracker and the annual Spring Concert, Portland Festival Ballet's charismatic performers storm the stage at the ACMA Performing Arts Center to dazzle audiences with high-flying pirouettes and convincing impersonations of ficus trees.
U.S. World Class Taekwondo employs award-winning instructors to teach students martial arts and self-defense skills. During kids’ martial arts classes, instructors split their time between bolstering tots’ motor skills and increasing their self-respect and discipline. The adult classes combine combat techniques, self-defense moves, exercise, meditation, and, on occasion, dodgeball.
When Matt Antis was in college, he was introduced to the practice of parkour—an intensely physical sport focused on efficiently navigating obstacles such as walls, bars, and whatever else happens to be nearby. After college, Matt Antis headed off to train for the US Army, then served in Iraq. When he returned in 2010, he married his fiancée, Whitney—and a year later, he took over ownership of Revolution Parkour.
Now, Whitney, who's also a parkour enthusiast, manages the front desk as Matt and his team of instructors teach students the gravity-defying skills of parkour and free running. Within a gym drenched in reds, blues, and spots of graffiti-style artwork, they lead classes ranging from beginner parkour to Parkour Fit, which emphasizes endurance and speed with challenging courses. Students balance on beams, vault over small barriers, and swing across bars, building strength and coordination. The staff emphasizes safety, keeping a watchful eye on students, taking the time to teach proper technique, and positioning cushy pads and magic carpets to break falls.