After spending time in Quaking Grass's furnished loft studio, you learn why some of the yoga, Zumba, and holistic-dance instructors refer to the space as their "big living room." Once inside the studio, you find yourself in a sprawling, high-ceilinged loft. Natural light spills in from tall windows and onto green walls, where African art and decorative Asian fans hang. Scanning the room, you see plush furniture, a kitchenette, and a massive Native American dream catcher, painted white and hanging 6 feet to the floor.
Quaking Grass is home to the Healing Arts Collective; many of its members left positions as businesspeople, teachers, and lawyers in favor of a more relaxed lifestyle. According to director Heather Straube, they each felt called to help others through techniques such as massage, yoga, and dance. Instructors lead students through progressive poses in Vinyasa yoga, dances set to Latin and Caribbean beats in Zumba, and blends of meditative martial arts and freeform movement in Earthquake Ecstatic and Nia dance. Though they guide some classes step-by-step, instructors emphasize free exploration over adhering to a strict routine—reminding students that they can meditate silently, pair off with partners, or dance alone to practice leading and following at the same time.
Once each month, Quaking Grass's members also host an open community clinic, experimental salon, and potluck. Practitioners stationed throughout the space introduce curious guests to basics of tarot-card reading, massage, hypnosis, quantum touch, and a host of other holistic methods—with the hope that visitors, like babies balancing their first checkbooks, experience something new. Individual members, artists, or community practitioners may also lead workshops or lectures explaining their craft.
It’s not uncommon for beginners to trip over their own feet during a social dance class at Eugene Dance Studio; it’s just as likely, however, that they’ll laugh off their small mistakes and continue to build connections with their partners and fellow classmates. The studio’s instructors foster a welcoming atmosphere that allows for this kind of interaction and leaves room for a misstep here and there. The schedule of group classes encompasses Latin styles such as salsa and Argentine tango, as well as social dances geared toward couples. The instructors—some of whom boast than 20 years of dance experience—also train students privately in informal lessons that impart delicate steps in preparation for upcoming weddings or jewelry heists.
When Lisa Stark's quest for a sensual, laid-back exercise class turned up nothing, she took matters into her own hands. To forge her ideal workout, which is a balance of sexy sizzle and athletic toning, Stark researched popular dance-fitness styles, documented choreography at local clubs, and even enlisted a former exotic dancer to teach her how to kick, saunter, and fill out tax forms in a sensual manner. The months of studying paid off?today, Lisa shares her wit, warmth, and fitness regimen with troupes of women at The Exotic You. Ladies of all fitness levels gather for classes that teach a complete routine of sensual dance moves, checking negative body-talk at the door and summoning their inner vixen out with slow leg extensions and passionate hip rolls.
Dance School Est. in 1972. Currently w/3 locations: Gresham, OR. And Camas/Washougal, WA. And in Stevenson, WA. We teach: ballet, tap, jazz, hip-hop, Mommy & Me, Ballroom, Salsa, Swing & Zumba. We have classes for toddlers thru adults.
Arthur Murray Dance Studio 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. Clients who arrive to lessons partnerless will be paired up with other classmates as the instructors assess their current skill level and make recommendations on the most appropriate program. 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.
Owner Lindsey Cooper founded Identity Dance Company in 2003 as a hip-hop studio that hoped to involve the community and provide a creative outlet with movement-based classes. Since then, the studio has expanded its scope and has begun to teach styles ranging from ballet to breakdance for all age groups. Lindsey's current staff—including several professional performers and three of Mikhail Baryshnikov's closest imaginary friends—oversees instructional training for performance groups as well as recreational sessions. The studio includes two separate practice spaces, which host group classes and private lessons throughout the week.