Julie Berger's memories are saturated with images of dancers— teachers who inspired her, students she worked with, and professionals she revered. Entranced by the beautiful and transformative art form, Julie practiced dance throughout her life, attending intensive dance programs, performing in competitions, and teaching at local dance centers. Julie discovered salsa dancing while studying in England, and she instantly fell in love with its sultry movements and lively steps. Determined to share the newfound style with others, Julie founded her own salsa-dancing studio.
At Salsa in the Suburbs Dance Studio, Julie and her staff of passionate dancers lead classes in a variety of styles, including salsa, ballroom, and belly dance. The instructors work with students of all levels, helping them master form, technique, and rhythms. The teachers also offer children's classes in ballet, tap, and Zumba, ideal for youngsters trying to be more active or hoping to include a lively dance section in their next chemistry presentation.
For more than 15 years, the Reading Comedy Outlet has been busting guts with its weekly slate of up-and-coming laugh larks and old-hand guffaw gurus. Arrive early on a Friday or Saturday evening to stake a prime plot of side-splitting real estate for comic concerts including Vancouver chuckle-chucker Phil Hanley on April 15 and 16, and the two-for-one combo of headliners Davin Rosenblatt and Cal Verduchi in late April. Ticket prices average between $13 and $14 per person. While not included in today's Groupon, the Alley Oops Sports Pub cooks up a full menu that includes sandwiches, funnel-cake fries, and slushies mixed with the flavorful tears of sad clowns.
The Sovereign Performing Arts Center has been a part of Reading since 1870, and has played many roles in that time. Built as a market, with a Masonic Temple on the upper floors and a bird university on the roof, it soon became the Academy of Music. Then, in 1917, the Rajah Shriners purchased the facility and turned it into a venue for vaudeville, motion pictures, and live appearances, laying the foundation for its current incarnation. Decades later, the Berks County Convention Center Authority purchased the Rajah Theater and treated it to a $7 million renovation, including a new air-conditioning system and more comfortable seating.
Recipients of the Meteor Ireland Music Award's 2008 Lifetime Achievement Award, the five-piece Irish rock band The Saw Doctors attack the stage with a musical vigor that turns concert-goers into concert-stayers and have created an international following of tapping toes and envious guitars. Amid lofted arena ceilings and rustic woodwork, raucously bob your head as the band plucks and toots their musical vessels to tracks from their latest album, The Further Adventures of The Saw Doctors, as well as their well-known hits, including "I Useta Lover" and "About You Now". From the premium reserved area, patrons can sing along with lead singer Davy Carton, shout in approval of epic guitar solos, and show off their shredding air-accordion chops.
Transporting its magical fairytale world from screen to stage, Shrek The Musical plops a lovable ogre's swamp and a beautiful princess's castle into the historic Hershey Theatre. Audience members' imaginations will cast off into Shrek's faraway kingdom, framed onstage by the theater's own ornate architecture. As Shrek and Donkey outduel the irksome Lord Farquaad for Fiona's affections, 19 all-new songs highlight the story's hilarity, drama, and instructions for achieving a lime-green complexion.