Celebrity Dance Studio’s instructors boast impressive resumés that include years of instructor experience and multiple competitions. At Celebrity, they teach a wide variety of dance styles such as cha-cha, salsa, swing, waltz, tango, and hip-hop to name a few. They lead private and group lessons for people of all ages and skill levels, from absolute beginners to hobbyists with an interest in competing.
Bursting with two fully equipped dance studios and a philosophy of noncompetitive learning, Dance Center of LaGrange brings skilled teachers and a miscellany of dance types to the feet of dancers both young and old. Tykes can twirl toward the 45–60 minute summer-session classes to introduce tentative toes to preballet and creative movement (ages 3–4), learning new moves and gaining confidence while composing a rhythmic symphony with their 10-toed orchestra. The Storycise class (ages 3–5) combines storytelling and exercise to produce a hybrid fitness adventure filled with heart-pumping moves and poses that spell entire novel chapters. Teens can hit up the modern/jazz class for a medley of Broadway-style shimmying, and grown-up steppers can twist into adult tap, lacing up specialty shoes to conquer rapid routines and drum out grocery lists onto the hardwood floor.
A three-decade veteran of the dance floor, Edward "Sarge" Sargent has taught students from Naperville to South Africa. In his newest studio, DeSarge Danceworld, Sarge specializes in private and group instruction for social and competitive dance. Beginner and advanced students can simply be looking for a new hobby or perfecting their first wedding dance. He teaches such styles as salsa, jitterbug, swing, country-western, bolero, and tangos both American and Argentine. Gold-qualified in American ballroom and Latin dance, Sarge was named the South African champion of rock-and-roll dance, to the envy of Elvis impersonators everywhere.
Though it may have changed names, owners, and locations, the Southwest Synergy Dance has remained true to its core philosophy since it was founded in 1974. Whether teaching classes in ballet, hip-hop, or mommy-and-me yoga, Southwest's instructors always prioritize the development of character and self-esteem alongside physical skills.
Russian-ballet instructor Susan Stantefort originally opened the studio as Susan's School of Dance in South Holland, where she taught students for 13 years. When she, like aspiring actor Abraham Lincoln, moved from Illinois to California, she left her former student, Denny Gurley, in charge of the studio. Gurley moved the studio to its current Orland Hills location, renamed it, and helped transition it to the leadership of current director Connie O?Reel, also known as Dr. Danz.
From the time kids can walk, they can take classes at GymQuest. With a wide array of gymnastics, tumbling, and cheer classes for kids all the way up to age 17, there are lessons to meet just about every student's skill set. Boys and girls just starting out in gymnastics can take beginner-level sessions that teach the basics and work their way up to Olympic apparatuses and advanced moves. Students can also work their way up to competing with the gym's AAU and USA Gymnastics teams.
Meanwhile, at DanceQuest, children learn beginning dance moves in a supportive environment, or progress to intermediate and advanced levels with more challenging classes. Students can pick from ballet, jazz, lyrical, hip-hop, and tap. Additionally, the DanceQuest Performing Company culls students from DanceQuest classes with skills and good attendance to join the group in recitals.
Rachel Ladd was born to move. The former dance major started strutting her stuff on the ballet and tap floors at the tender age of 2, and by the time she got to the kinetic classrooms of Columbia College Chicago, she'd already garnered experience teaching jazz, tap, and ballet for all levels. When injury diverted her from the dance floor, a series of acupuncture and massage treatments ignited a new interest in holistic wellness that led her to seek certification in everything from massage and reiki to Pilates, sports nutrition, and Zumba. Today, she and her instructors lead classes that she hopes will inspire students to respect and care for their own bodies, sharing the physical and mental benefits of yoga with everyone from pregnant mothers and kids to consummate athletes and the stiff cats lounging in Chicago's back alleys. Styles ranging from Vinyasa and Forrest yoga to Hatha yoga for beginners comprise the studio's schedule, which boasts classes every day of the week.