Broadway Dance Center was founded in 1984 as a central hub where dancers could hone in on diversified training—from ballet and tap to jazz and hip-hop. Previously dancers would have to travel all around the city to a modern studio, ballet academy, or hip-hop hangout in order to train. Now, over thirty years later, Broadway Dance Center remains one of New York City’s most popular dance studios thanks to its high-caliber teachers, wide variety of styles offered, and enduring mission to serve as a home for dancers of all ages—from recreational to professional.
And BDC’s goal to serve the dance community continues to grow and develop year after year. Besides offering over two hundred dance classes each week and hosting prestigious training programs such as the Professional Semester and International Student Visa Program, Broadway Dance Center has some exciting partnerships, master classes, and training programs to announce for Spring, Summer, and Fall 2015.
Broadway Dance Center is the ultimate networking dance studio. Executive Director, Diane King, strives to connect choreographers, dance styles, current shows, professional companies, top-name brands, and popular culture all through BDC.
For example, Broadway Dance Center has recently partnered with Bloch to offer the monthly Bloch Master Class Series, featuring some of the dance industry’s top teachers and choreographers including Dave Scott, Kyle Hanagami, and Brian Friedman. Previous classes have focused on street jazz styles, but BDC hopes to bring in a variety of teachers and choreographers from across the country.
In partnership with the Mark Morris Dance Group, BDC is also excited to introduce the BDC in Brooklyn Series: monthly master classes offered to the Brooklyn dance community by teachers like Neil Schwartz and Carlos Neto.
Broadway Dance Center has also partnered with Hard Candy Fitness—an exclusive exercise class inspired and created by Madonna’s personal trainers, Craig Smith, Jessica Castro, Tim Anderson, Marlyn Ortiz, and Kendra Kemerley. The exclusive class, entitled Dancers’ Access, includes an extensive warm up, performance choreography (inspired by Madonna’s tours), conditioning, flexibility, and cardio. If you want to get in tip-top dancer shape, look no further than Dancers’ Access! Classes are held Monday and Wednesday nights from 6:30-8:00pm at BDC.
An upcoming master class series will concentrate on audition prep for NFL and NBA cheerleading teams. These auditions are much different from traditional theatre open calls or commercial castings because they not only include several dance cuts, but often also comprise of a fitness test, solo performance, and interview portion. BDC’s master classes—with choreographers from the Jets Flight Crew, Knicks City Dancers, etc.—will focus on technique and choreography as well as cover how dancers can package and market themselves at the actual audition. Stay tuned for more information about these master classes.
Master classes and workshops are frequent at Broadway Dance Center. The studio brings in guest instructors nearly every day and organizes workshop series for visiting groups and dancers looking for more focused, intensive training.
Broadway Dance Center frequently hosts Industry Insider, a behind-the-scenes look at “show business.” Industry Insider seminars have ranged from mock auditions in front of casting directors, to Q&A seminars with agents, to master classes on some of the industry’s current hits (i.e. The Aluminum Show, Happy We’ll Be, and Lysistrata Jones). The most recent Industry Insider incorporated a commercial mock audition and book release with author, Matthew Shaffer (So You Want To Be A Dancer) and a panel of industry professionals including Rachelle Rak, Rhonda Miller, Lauren Gaul, Jennifer Peralta-Ajemian, and a representative from CESD Talent Agency.
Additional master classes and workshops held at Broadway Dance Center include the Broadway Choreographer Series that allows dancers to learn current Broadway repertoire with cast members and/or the creative team from the show. Recent classes have brought in Chet Walker from Pippin, James Grey from Bullets over Broadway, and Chip Abbott and Paloma Garcia-Lee from On the Town. The next series of classes will be taught by Alison Solomon, associate to choreographer Josh Bergasse on the musical Gigi.
The Rockette Experience is another exclusive workshop where dancers get the chance to live a day as a Radio City Rockette. The Rockette Experience is designed for intermediate/advanced dancers ages 10 and older with ballet, tap, and jazz experience. It includes a three-hour dance class taught by a Rockette, a mock audition and Q&A session, a ticket to the Radio City Stage Door Tour, and an orchestra/1st mezzanine ticket to the new talk-of-the-town, The New York Spring Spectacular. Less experienced dancers (of any age) can also participate in Rockettes 101, a more open workshop that includes a one-hour dance class and a ticket to The New York Spring Spectacular.
Then there is the always-popular Summer Workshop Series, this year featuring esteemed Broadway Dance Center faculty like Sheila Barker (jazz), Tracie Stanfield (contemporary/lyrical), Cat Cogliandro (contemporary), Tricia Miranda (hip hop), Lane Napper (commercial dance), and Ricky Hinds (musical theater). These 4-day workshops are designed for serious dancers who are ready to be challenged in a given style of dance. Dancers get intimate training with their workshop instructor, two additional master classes with dance industry professionals, an improvisation/freestyle class, an audition with an NYC casting agent, a mock audition and personal evaluation from a panel of professionals, five drop-in classes at BDC, and a final showcase for friends and family.
And for dancers who want even more contemporary training, BDC offers the 4-day Contemporary Intensive taught by Tracie Stanfield with Slam and Wes Veldink. This intensive includes morning barre class, daily technique and rehearsal with Tracie Stanfield, daily training and rehearsal with Slam and Wes Veldink, master classes in commercial contemporary and progressions with Synthesis Dance, a Q&A with a concert dance panel, an in-studio presentation and video shoot, and three drop-in classes at BDC as well.
For pre-professional dancers looking for the most exclusive training and guidance as they embark on a professional career in dance—you need not look further than BDC’s elite training programs.
Broadway Dance Center’s well-known Professional Semester offers the advanced technical training; pragmatic branding, marketing, and professionalism skills; and powerful networking opportunities with agents and casting directors to help students launch a sustainable career in dance. Graduates have gone on to successful careers in commercial dance, cruise ships, national and international tours, concert dance, and on Broadway. This year BDC is launching a Professional Semester Audition Tour, traveling to Pittsburgh, Chicago, and Dallas to find the new class of Fall 2015 (dancers who are unable to attend the live audition tour can still submit a video audition).
For dancers looking for extensive training but who don’t quite feel ready for a pre-professional track, Broadway Dance Center holds the Training Program, where dancers take twelve classes per week, attend exclusive master classes and seminars, choose a concentration and a mentor amongst the BDC faculty, and work with BDC’s Educational Department to develop the skills and experience to move on to the next step in their dance journeys—often, the Professional Semester.
International students can also participate in this elite training through the International Student Visa Program, a three, six, or twelve-month course of training at BDC including twelve drop-in classes per week (with a chosen concentration), master classes, mentorship, and performance opportunities. ISVPs come to BDC from countries all over the world including Singapore, India, Australia, Brazil, France, and Japan.
And for younger dancers, Broadway Dance Center offers the Junior Training Program for ages 10-17. This three or six-week summer intensive is a spin-off on BDC’s Professional Semester, serving as pre-professional training and guidance for children and teen dancers. Students take fifteen classes each week (six within their chosen concentration, four ballet, two diversity, one VAPSY (voice, acting, Pilates, stretch, or yoga), and two electives).
So, whether you’re looking for a specific workshop, teacher, or style of dance, you’re sure to find it at Broadway Dance Center. Visit www.broadwaydancecenter.com for their daily class schedule and current updates on partnerships, master classes, workshops, and professional training programs at the studio.
By Mary Callahan of Dance Informa.
Photo (top): The street view of Broadway Dance Center at 322 West 45th Street. Photo courtesy of Broadway Dance Center.