Dance Like the Newsies With Philly Dance Fitness Tomorrow



If learning the Newsies choreography on your own has proven too daunting (What? You still haven’t mastered it since I posted this last summer?), you’re in luck: Philly Dance Fitness is hosting a Broadway-themed dance workshop this weekend, and owner Deborah Hirsch tells me one of the dances they’ll be learning is the choreography from what is arguably the movie’s best song, “Seize the Day.”

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Franky Bradley’s Will Open Upstairs for Valentine’s Weekend

franky-bradleys-opening-weekend-940The weekend of Valentine’s Day will be the official grand opening of the upstairs lounge and cabaret space at Mark Bee’s Franky Bradley’s. The upstairs will kick off with a cabaret hosted by Foxy Tann, the the Boss of Burlesque, on Friday, February 13th.

On Saturday, February 14th, the upstairs will host the official after-party of the Philadelphia Tattoo Arts Convention. Admission is free with a convention wristband or handstamp. Sailor Jerry’s drinks will be on special for $5 all night. The lounge and cabaret is already busy booking events for the second half of February and into March. See all the events on Franky Bradley’s Facebook page.

Downstairs, the main dining room will add some Valentine’s Day specials to the menu.

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Our Chat With Out So You Think You Can Dance? and Dancing With The Stars Choreographer Travis Wall

Travis Wall Header

When Travis Wall was five days old, his mother set up his crib in a dance studio that she owned. The rest, they say, is history.

The much-in-demand dancer and choreographer, who has been featured on ever-popular shows So You Think You Can Dance? and Dancing With The Stars, isn’t new to the business: He moved to New York when he was 12 to star in the Broadway revival of The Music Man. At 14, he had a devastating injury that caused him to move back home to Virginia. However, it was a blessing in disguise. Read more »

5 Indoor Fitness Classes You Can’t Possibly Get Bored Of

Lithe Method

Lithe Method | Photo via Facebook.

It’s going to be crushingly cold tonight and tomorrow, so chances are you’re seriously considering your indoor-workout options for the next 48 hours. If you’ve quickly grown bored of your indoor winter workout routine — after all, hopping on the elliptical every other day can get old real quick — we’ve got just the fix: five Philly fitness classes that are anything but boring. From a trampoline workout to a seriously sweaty treadmill class, these indoor picks will help tame your winter-workout blues. Check them out below.

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TONIGHT: Koresh Dance Company Performs “Ev-o-lu-tion”

Koresh Dance Company performs in "Ev-o-lu-tion." | Photo via Facebook, courtesy of Bicking Photography.

Koresh Dance Company performs in “Ev-o-lu-tion.” | Photo via Facebook, courtesy of Bicking Photography.

The Koresh Dance Company has been touring the world, showing off their amazing performances in Colorado, Texas, and Oklahoma in the past few weeks alone. Next week they head to Belarus and then to Art Basel Miami, the prestigious international celebration of the arts. But before they go globe-trotting, see them tonight at the Suzanne Roberts Theatre.

The dancers will perform their hit “Ev-o-lu-tion,” the work of artistic director and founder Ronen Koresh. The program uses movement to explore how humans would have – or could have – communicated at the dawn of time. Koresh asks, has our way of communicating really evolved or do we just use a different language? The piece uses guttural sounds and the body to investigate the raw side of humanity and whether we truly differ from our ancient ancestors.

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Dance Like Beyoncé at South Street’s Millennium Dance Complex


Millennium’s wall-to-wall street art |Photo by Lauren Mame Thomas

Attention all dancers (and Dance Moms fanatics): Millennium Dance Complex, the world-renown dance studio company, is opening a location in Philadelphia. Located on South Street in the former home of Pearl Arts & Crafts, the 39,000 square feet dance, arts, and fitness complex will open Friday, November 28th. But this isn’t just any old dance studio. The California-based Millennium has made its name by bringing the biggest choreographers in the biz to its studios to teach classes and workshops.

And boy, are they bringing them. Their opening weekend alone features classes instructed by choreographers for Beyoncé, Justin Timberlake, Rihanna, Katy Perry, Mariah Carey, and more.

The majority of the studios classes will be drop-in style, covering all genres of dance with monthly master classes. (Check out Property’s coverage for more info on the building and photos.) Since half the A-list utilizes Millennium’s training facilities (located in Dallas, North Hollywood, Chicago and more) dancers may occasionally see a pop star hanging out while on tour to rehearse or scout talent.

Philadelphia-born owner Lori Ramsay Long and her 15-year-old daughter are to thank for the new complex. After spending years driving her daughter to New York for professional-track dance classes, Long wondered why she couldn’t find similar-quality classes a little closer to home. Now young dancers from the region can get top-tier training from a rotating cast of celeb teachers without the lengthy and costly commute.

Despite being a West Coast import, Millennium is fully embracing its South Street surroundings: its four huge studios are named after the letters in “Pearl” and marked with pieces of the art store’s original sign.

16 Workshops and Classes Worth Trying This Fall in Philly


Everyone has that one thing they’ve always wanted to try: painting, singing, cooking … taxidermy. So, what stops us? Well, learning a new skill takes a lot of time and effort, as well as money and a bit of courage. (Ok, a lot). Philly is full of exciting classes and workshops to help you scratch that creative itch you’ve always had. The list of fun and funky options below is just the tip of the iceberg. Go forth and explore!

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Resurrection Room Finds Gunnar Montana Hitting His Artistic Stride

Local choreographer—and former G Philly cover boy—Gunnar Montana is currently starring in his latest FringeArts piece Resurrection Room, one of a host of LGBT shows playing at this year’s festival. Unfortunately we haven’t had a chance to see it yet, but a reader, Mark Bolen sent this commentary that we wanted to share. Full disclosure: As you’ll discover when you read, Bolen is Gunnar’s ex-boyfriend, but conflict of interest aside, it offers a behind-the-scenes peek into the artistic evolution of one of Philly’s most promising up-and-coming performers, LGBT or otherwise. Check out his piece below.

Photo by Garrett Matthew

Photos by Garrett Matthew

I met Gunnar moonlighting at a Center City restaurant back in 2011, but he didn’t call himself Montana then. He was Gunnar Clark, an adorable UArts senior, bursting with energy and creativity. We became fast friends—and eventually boyfriends. I spent two years on a wild ride intimately linked to Gunnar’s evolution as an artist. During the course of that time I got to load my car full of shredded medical records, ride a stretcher down 8th Street at 2 a.m. (we got pulled over, but avoided a ticket), stand in a robe in my tub and be doused with black paint, and fold I don’t know how many paper plates and cone “spikes.”

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WATCH: Philly DJ Aaron Ruxbin Subject of New Documentary Series

Philly videographer Mike Cessario just wrapped on the pilot of a proposed documentary series that follows local electronic dance music (EDM) pioneer and Actual Records founder Aaron Ruxbin

Cessario tells me he decided to shoot a film that focuses on Ruxbin because of the DJs unlikely story. He was a Drexel University business grad who “ditched the cubicle to create a grimey underground dance music empire in Philadelphia,” he says. “EDM has exploded and DJs are the new rockstars, but I want to show the less-glamorous side of the business—the side that actually powers 90 percent of [the Philly EDM scene].”

These days, Cessario says, Ruxbin basically lives out of his car while putting on sold-out shows at TLA and, for a little side money, a strip club called Purple Orchid. All that’s captured in pilot, with commentary by local MC Buddy Leezle and DJ Jack Deezl.

Cessario hopes this short film will attract investors who may be interested in backing a more-blown-out documentary. If not, this could be the only episode we’ll see. “This will remain a conceptual pilot for a series until we find more support. If we don’t, it will die and go to the pilot graveyard.”

Check it out above.

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