If you live in New Orleans, you probably enjoy dancing, at least to some extent.
But there’s a huge difference between the kind of dance I do – where my arms flutter so far from my body I’m afraid they’ll never come back while my right and left legs seem to be listening to two different songs. – and the skill that many of my fellow New Orleans residents demonstrate.
Whether it’s Mardi Gras, festivals, second lines, random Saturday nights, weddings or even funerals, I often ask myself, “How the hell did they learn to move like that?” ” But every time I look in the far corner and see someone doing the robot, I know I’m not alone.
So I took to the streets, talked to some friends who are really in control of their bodies, and put together this list of the best places in town to work on your moves. And whether you want a formal and organized dance class, a series of classes, burn calories, release endorphins, improve the functioning of your brain (!) or if you just want to go to a bar to learn a few steps and meet new friends, this city is full of great options!
So put on those dancing shoes, follow me, and let’s cut a mat!
In the studio
New Orleans is home to amazing studios and instructors. If you want to join an organized class, here are some popular places to start!
Whether you want to learn hip-hop, jazz, contemporary, Latin, ballroom, tap dance, ballet, yoga, rebound, fitness or more, this studio on St. Claude Avenue is there to help you. âIt’s so welcoming,â said Kelly Burgess, a student at Dance grounds (3705 avenue Saint-Claude). âAnd the most affordable dance lessons I’ve found!â
A single class costs only $ 12 and a month of unlimited classes costs $ 33! And the reason for these incredible prices is twofold. First, the studio wants anyone who’s ever thought about taking a class – whether it’s the very first time, to pick up after a hiatus, or to continue professional-level education – to feel like Dancing Grounds has a place for them. .
âI’ve noticed that so many adults are nervous about taking a dance class,â explained studio director Laura Stein, âeither because they’re afraid to dance in front of others or because that they are anxious to learn the choreography. But we want everyone to be able to access the healing and joyful powers of movement. Everything we do is designed for this reason.
And, as if that weren’t enough, Dancing Grounds is a non-profit organization, whose adult classes contribute to its myriad of programs and classes for young people!
Click here to find out what classes they have coming up!
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New Orleans dance
Katarina Boudreaux, owner of New Orleans dance – the umbrella organization encompassing two studios: Dance Quarter and Rhythmic Arts Center – said the dance helped welcome her when she returned to New Orleans as an adult. âOne of the first things I did when I got back,â she recalls, âwas to attend a community tango event. I made friends who, six years later, are still my friends today. This is what is happening in the dance community!
It’s the kind of community she hopes her studios can help build for New Orleans residents who attend their classes. Even the locations – with Dance Quarter located in Uptown (1719 Toledano St.) and the Rhythmic Arts Center downtown (2358 St. Claude Ave.) – allow him and his instructors to serve a greater portion of the city. the city.
âDancing is multi-everything,â Boudreaux said. âMultigenerational. Multi-stylistic. And it welcomes all walks, shapes and nuances of life. Dance is a natural expression of pleasure. It’s happening in the NOW, and it’s exhilarating.
The studio offers a range of classes at both locations. For a solo dance or fitness experience, you can sign up for Dance Trance, Belly Dance, and Dancers Bootcamp. (Plus, there’s a hip-hop class for kids.) These classes cost $ 15 per class, with 10- or 15-class passes available at a discounted rate.
If you are interested in learning to dance as a couple (you can come alone from elsewhere – no need to come with a partner!), There are a ton of options for you: swing, salsa, West Coast swing, Argentinian ballroom, blues, tango and zouk, to name a few. Dance Quarter offers courses ranging from four weeks to 10 weeks.
Its next seven-week series begins May 13 for $ 100 per person, or $ 185 for two people or two classes.
For a list of drop-in and multi-week courses offered, check their calendar!
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[hearst-location place_id=âChIJycanZiGmIIYRBMaF0gyEooQâ]Rhythmic Arts Center[/hearst-location]
Perfect Fitness Pole
This studio in the French Quarter (in the boutiques of Canal Place) presents itself as a place “for fun and fitness!” Â»Classes teach students beautiful pole choreography and build strength. Perfect Fitness Pole promises you will see the difference physically and mentally.
Discover their program here, and you can sign up for pole dance classes at different levels (including beginner sessions!), as well as free weekly community Pilates classes! They also offer discounts for new pole fitness students.
(Oh, and if you know of a bachelorette party in town, they have plenty of fun options for those crowds too!)
[hearst-location place_id=âChIJ-fuktw6vIIYRSBNgOxo_qaoâ]Pole Perfect Fitness – New Orleans Pole Dancing Fitness Studio and Bachelorette Party Studio[/hearst-location]
Tammy Duke is the owner of Dance Flower studio (6610 Fleur De Lis Drive) and co-owner of the West Coast Swing Academy in New Orleans, which shares a space. She thinks the learning process is a unique focus in her studio. âWe create the perfect learning environment for a motivated student,â she explained. “And our students appreciate being surrounded by a positive and nurturing institution with real curriculum-based classes.”
All classes are taught by Duke and his West Coast Swing Academy partner Byron Bellow, both certified dance teachers and judges. West Coast swing lessons for beginners, intermediate and advanced are offered at the studio, as well as two-stage country lessons for beginners and intermediates.
On weekends, you can attend classes as varied as salsa, cha-cha, Argentine tango, romantic sway, fox-trot, rumba and more!
Course prices range from $ 15 to $ 20 per class per person (or one possibility of subscription for unlimited lessons for $ 100 per month!), and private lessons are offered in ballroom, latin and swing styles for $ 75 for a 55-minute session.
Here is where you can find a complete list of courses Free in this studio in the Lakeview area.
[hearst-location place_id=âChIJ9_Eo8K6vIIYRiyEYFldB2kEâ]Flower Dance LLC[/hearst-location]
Lotus Crescent Dance Studio
Lotus Crescent Dance Studio has served New Orleans for 12 years. The owner, Kryss Statho, recalled that “our slogan was to ‘get in the dance’ and it is still the case today”.
Statho hopes students in his studio can use dance to treat and relieve stress, feel connected, and find community. âAnd, then, we hope it helps them motivate change in their lives outside of the studio,â she said.
Located in Uptown, Crescent Lotus offers public and private lessons for everyone from complete beginners to advanced dancers. They offer belly dance, salsa, pole dance classes and even a Pound Rockout Workout class, which Statho explained: âYou can rhythmically hit things with sticks so you don’t really notice you just did 400 squats. ! “
There is also a dance-meditation class “for those who want to slow things down with meditation but just can’t stand still”, and a music class that teaches musicians how to play the music that accompanies the dance of the dance. stomach !
You can consult the course calendar here. They are between $ 10 and $ 25, but most instructors also offer discounts when students register for multiple courses.
[hearst-location place_id=âChIJLQKROAqlIIYRfmP5-N0jbh0â³]Lotus Crescent Dance Studio[/hearst-location]
Take him to the bar
Outside of the formal (and stimulating!) Studios mentioned above, it is also not uncommon to find dance lessons offered in bars and clubs, followed by an open dance session with live music. . Here are two that I have heard a lot of people talk about positively!
Every Sunday evening, swing (* wink *) by this Club Marigny for swing dance lessons at 8 p.m., followed by live music and a chance to practice your new skills from 9 p.m. to midnight! There is no cover, but a minimum glass is required per set.
[hearst-location place_id=âChIJAwGJ-SGmIIYR2TxnGM_wWloâ]The AllWays lounge and cabaret[/hearst-location]
On Monday nights, the second floor of The Dragon’s Den – the historic two-story concert hall and event space on the edge of Frenchmen Street – also hosts a donation-based swing dance class at 8 p.m., followed by the possibility to dance to a live swing group from 9pm!
“It’s a great date!” said Trish Parker, frequent attendee. âOr just a great way to meet new people. It’s a fun mix of locals and visitors moving around the city.
[hearst-location place_id=âChIJORghihemIIYR0S3tl4Snoasâ]Dragon’s lair[/hearst-location]
Dance and movement have been part of the human experience for almost as long as we stand on two legs. It is part of civilizations, no matter where on the globe those civilizations have developed, and New Orleans is no exception.
In fact, it feels like New Orleans has doubled humanity’s love for dance. It’s part of who we are. And this city gives each of us many opportunities to go out and embrace it.
To verify The New Orleans Dance Network, which strives to promote the visibility of dance in the greater New Orleans area, and has a nifty calendar of some of the classes that take place in town each day.
And if you feel like I missed a class, studio, or event that you love – and I’m sure I do – then please let me know in the comments section of our Facebook page so I can make sure to include it in the future!