Dance & Arts Connection owner Vicky Clark-Staton doesn’t just want her students to master the proper techniques and steps of ballet, jazz, hip-hop, and the other styles taught at her studio. She strives to motivate her students to unlock a passion for movement, developing their own personal style and cultivating friendships along the way, as she did throughout more than 25 years of dance experience. When they’re not teaching kids to tap or leading patrons of all ages in cardio dance-fitness workouts, the instructors coach competitive dance companies. Their creative choreography and the dancers’ razor-sharp moves strike awe in audiences, judges, and even the most flexible golden figurines atop trophies.
Where there is human life, there is dance. At United Dance Academy, the instructors take an anthropological approach to their adult and children's dance classes by teaching styles from all over the globe. The instructors lead international styles such as the Brazilian samba and African dance, imparting their worldly skills to adults of all ability levels. In addition to perfecting their technique, students can enhance their endurance and ability to bench press a salsa partner in fitness-driven classes such as barre and Latin-based Zumba classes.
Kids age 3 and older can begin their dance voyages with classical styles such as ballet and jazz, or more contemporary styles such as hip-hop. The staff also lends their talents to parties and private events with Bollywood or belly-dance performances, and conduct personal Zumba and Brazilian samba lessons.
Oluremi Sano had one of her earliest dance experiences at Bryan Adams High School, performing as a Bryan Adams Belle. Since then, she has undergone extensive training and earned a graduate degree in higher education administration. Combining her skill sets, she founded Fihankra Dance & Fitness Studio to create a community that valued both dance and fitness. The studio’s motto is “per ankh seneb,” or health, wealth, and prosperity. They teach more than 14 styles of dance class in an aim to get people moving and help them achieve their fitness goals. Zumba, Bollywood, African dance, and yoga classes run seven days a week.
Ad-Libs' cast of musicians, standup comedians, and professional writers has poured out its spontaneous ideas and off-kilter humor through a quarter-century of frenetic evenings. The troupe performs in a cabaret-style theater, mixing video with scripted and improvisational comedy while inspiring audience members to participate. Despite their diverse backgrounds, the laugh-masters' shared knack for spontaneity should not surprise since most have studied in Ad-Libs' school of off-the-cuff humor, which imparts to students what it takes to get a full ride to clown college.
Tucked away from life's daily barrage of appointments, meetings, and expectations, Dallas Yoga Center provides a tranquil haven for self-discovery and the mental truces that achieve inner peace. An arched Indian doorway marks the threshold between the outside world and the refuge of the 8,000-sq.-ft. facility, which houses four spacious, naturally lit studios.
Inside, instructors lead groups through more than 65 classes per week, which focus on a variety of yoga styles. During the studio's Beginners Yoga classes, aspiring yogis learn the basic motions and breathing techniques that serve as the jumping-off point for their yogic journeys. From there, they can explore the gentle calmness of Yin Yoga, the intense exertion of a hot Ashtanga Yoga class set at 85 degrees, the prop-aided poses of Iyengar Yoga, or the ab-toning workouts of Yoga Core. They can also take part in t'ai chi sessions that leave minds spry and energies recentered. After class, students can propel their practices forward by stocking up on the center's selection of yoga clothes, jewelry, props, accessories, and DVDs. For those seeking even deeper enlightenment, the center also sponsors yoga teacher training, and even arranges retreats to India, where students study ayurveda and yoga straight from the source.