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Tag Archive for zumba

Tennessee Arts Conservatory Interview with Jennifer Harwell

Tennessee Arts Conservatory in Franklin, Tennessee, is classically focused, with pre professional and competition training.  They engage their dancers artistically and athletically and part of that is teaching injury prevention and nutrition.  For pointe, ballet, and choreography they focus on private coaching.  Additionally, they engage the students at a young age with choreography and one of the ways they do that is by letting them enter their choreography into competitions. The students have regular evaluations and ballet exams, and when they graduate, they are ready for a college program or a professional company.

Tennessee Arts Conservatory is owned by Jennifer Harwell where she is also the Artistic Director. Nashville in Motion, their Professional Dance Company, began as a unique artistic endeavor to bring audiences contemporary dance in collaboration with musical talent.

In Jennifer’s opinion, there are a number of things that set them apart from other dance studios in their area. One of those things is the number of guest teachers and Master Classes they offer. In addition, they offer a guidance program for dance as the next step for students entering their junior or senior year of high school. Tennessee Arts also offers Visual Art and Homeschool classes.  Last, they are developing a (more…)

Twisted Bodies Interview with Carissa Laitinen-Kniss and Khristen Pahler

According to Carissa Laitinen-Kniss and Khristen Pahler, Co-Owners, Twisted Bodies in Denton, Texas, is not just a studio. “Twisted Bodies” is a home to a growing team of passionate caring people, who provide intelligent training to individuals of all backgrounds and ages. From dance, to aerial arts, yoga and Pilates, Twisted Bodies is dedicated to giving recreational classes and training to professionals. In addition to on-going classes, Twisted Bodies is also a teacher training center for yoga, aerial yoga, aerial Pilates, and more. Additionally, they host on-going performances and house a professional aerial dance company that performs throughout the United States.

They believe that Twisted Bodies stands out among other dance studios because it is more than just a dance studio. They begin everyone with Pilates training to condition their bodies for higher level performance. In addition, their professional track students go on to learn a variety of circus arts from aerial silks to Lyra hoop.

They are the proudest when they see the triumph and success in their student’s eyes from age 6 to 75!

They believe that the biggest mistakes dancers make is when they focus on technique and performance all the time which is wonderful. However, not enough emphasis is placed on conditioning (more…)

Gracie’s Guys and Gals Dance Studio Interview with Grace Myles

grace mylesGrace Myles (Gracie) is the Owner and Artistic Director of Gracie’s Guys and Gals Dance Studio in Hollywood, Maryland. She describes the studio as a friendly, family-oriented, clean studio for ages 3 through adult in many disciplines of dance. Their staff is very talented, some with college degrees in dance and some with professional dance background (Disney, Stomp, and Tap Dogs). Gracie and her staff are very pleasant and welcoming and their recitals are more of a show rather than a recital with elaborate stage decorations. They just expanded the studio this summer, and they have four dance rooms, a little café for the kids to hang out, with a sofa, kitchen counter with stools, , plus a large lobby with a TV for the parents.

In Gracie’s opinion, they are unique among other dance studios for a number of reasons including the fact they offer extra activities such as a Halloween Party and Dance and a Block Party to kick off the season with games. Additionally, they are involved in community services and shows.  They also have picnic tables and a playground outside with a basketball hoop and a very large lobby. Obviously, the studio thinks of the entire family and tries (more…)

Belly Motions, Inc. Interview with Luisa Molina

Belly DancingSpecializing in World Dances in a class format designed for adult women who want to start dancing at a later age, they offer authentic Middle Eastern, Indian, African, Hip Hop, Zumba and other specialty dance and fitness classes, Belly Motions, Inc., located in South Miami, Florida, is driven by a selective team of professionals dedicated to their students and the performing arts. Portia Lange, Founder and CEO, founded Belly Motions in 2005 in order to empower women of all ages through dances that celebrate differences in body shapes and sizes. For this article, we interviewed Luisa Molina, their Director of Business Development. Not only is Luisa the Director of both the KIDS Programs and Business Development, she is also a Belly Dance instructor and performer.

The staff has experienced many proud moments as Belly Motions’ instructors, but their favorites tend to be when they celebrate their students’ birthdays during their dance class!  This is a sure reminder not only that their students enjoy Belly Motion’s studio, but that they LOVE and want to be here to share their gratitude on their special days.

In Portia’s experience, she has found that women tend to be very competitive with each other.   At Belly Motions, they (more…)

Dawn Crafton Dance Connection Interview with Dawn Crafton

Three Young DancersDawn Crafton Dance Connection (DCDC) in Gaithersburg, Maryland, is considered a second home to most of their students. It is a warm, welcoming and supportive environment and they are just a big dance family. They have been around for more than 60 years and have taught generations of families in their community during that time.  The younger dancers look up to the older dancers and the older dancers take the little ones under their wings to mentor them.  Graduates and their families make it a point to come back for recitals, competitions and other activities to say hello and support the younger students.

Dawn Crafton Dance Center’s professional faculty offers classes for all ages, all levels and all genres. The Dance Connection offers recreational to intensive programs for dancers of all ages and abilities in a wide variety of disciplines: Ballet, Pointe, Contemporary, Tap, Jazz, Hip Hop, Conditioning, Leaps and Turns, Pom Technique, Creative Movement, Pre-School Combo Tap/Ballet, ZUMBA! and Yoga.But, according to Dawn Crafton, their Founder and Executive Director, what really sets DCDC apart from other studios is the unique wealth of life lessons, actual experiences, a great combination of backgrounds and extensive connections they can, and do, pass on and (more…)

Wilde Coward Company Interview with Jo Yadanza

Lady with umbrellaThe Wilde Coward Company (“TWCC”) in New Smyrna Beach, Florida, is an integrated art studio, which means they do it all. Their studio goes far beyond what you would find at other studios because they focus on all aspects of art. They provide classes in dance, theatre, yoga, singing, and fine arts. Along with their classes, they also endeavor to give their students plenty of chances to exercise their talents throughout the year with many performance opportunities.

Starting out as a traveling theatre and dance troupe, The Wilde Coward Company (derived from two of our favorite playwrights Oscar Wilde and Noel Coward) has been entertaining local audiences for a number of years. After spending the past eight seasons on the road rehearsing in living rooms and sister studios, they are putting down roots as a fully developed arts studio.

The Wilde Coward Company recently set up residence as an educational haven for artistic expression. Their curriculum has strong focus in dance, yoga, theatre, and fine arts. They bring decades of experience to the community and offer courses for all ages. Along with their classes, they continue to produce outstanding performances.

They offer classes in several genres. Their dance classes include Ballet/Pointe, Jazz, Tap, Four LadiesLyrical, (more…)

Southern Dance Theatre Interview with Penni Greenly

SoloSouthern Dance Theatre in Boynton Beach, Florida, is dedicated to the education and artistic achievement of each student. According to Penni Greenly, the President and owner, it is a training ground for both the recreational dancer as well as the career inspired. A faculty of diverse men and women are selectively chosen and are highly qualified professionals that are responsible for the education of their student body of 425. The school was founded in 1983 by Penni and her mentor, Joan Miller. Penni says that the administrative offices are a fantastic core of ladies specializing in the support of their teachers, students and parents with backgrounds in accounting, marketing and customer service.

For over 33 years, Southern Dance Theatre has offered dance classes for students of all levels ages three through adult and has been a recognized leader in dance education within the South Florida performing arts community. They train dancers, beginners to pre professionals, ages 3 t0 adult in Tap, Ballet, Jazz, Modern, Contemporary, Conditioning, Hip Hop, Zumba, and Fitness.

Their experience ranges from instructing beginner to pre-professional students. Many of their student graduates have gone on to professional companies and schools of higher education such as The Julliard School in New (more…)