Here’s All the Places You Can Take a Drop-in Dance Class in Philly

For when you want to channel your inner ballerina, learn how to salsa, or just want to move and groove.

Dancing can be a great way to focus your mind, express yourself, and get a killer workout. Here’s where you can take drop-in dance classes in Philly. / Photograph by Merge Dance Studio

When I was eight years old, I had to decide between sports and dance due to schedule conflicts. I chose dance, mainly because I felt most free — most like myself — doing timesteps in my tap shoes and pliés at the ballet barre. No matter which class, my body and mind were always challenged, disciplined, focused, and satisfied.

My experience is not unique, as dance, especially dance fitness, is still thriving. Sure, you can burn a bunch of calories in a dance class, but the art form is not simply a total-body workout. Dancing can boost cognitive functions like processing speed, help you form connections with others, and even alleviate your anxiety. Clearly, cutting a rug works to boost your overall wellness.

Here in Philly, you can shake your groove thing at a handful of studios without needing to register or be a member. Whether you’re looking to belly dance, do ballerina twirls, or twerk it out, we’ve rounded up all the places in the city where you can drop-in and dance.

Alexis Rose Experience

Where: 954 North 8th Street (Northern Liberties); 1170 South Broad Street (South Philly)
Drop-in rate: $25

Let out your inner diva and slay all day (or at least for 60 minutes), thanks to the Alexis Rose Experience. Founder Alexis Rose — who assisted choreography for singers such as Ciara and Fabolous — will get your booty poppin’ in her dance classes Hip-Hop Thursday and Ratchet Fitness. You can also learn the moves to your favorite songs by Bey, Rihanna, and other women empowerment artists during 90-minute workshops.

BalletX

Where: 1923 Washington Avenue (Graduate Hospital)
Drop-in rate: $15
BalletX, one of Philly’s premier contemporary ballet companies, offers drop-in dance classes for adults, youth, and families. Whether you take Intro to Ballet, West African Dance, or Family Groove Train, you’re sure to get a killer workout while also honing your technique.

DanceFit Exertainment

Where: 2423 Frankford Avenue (East Kensington); 98 Bethlehem Pike (Chestnut Hill)
Drop-in rate: $18; $10 on Tuesdays only

Created for people who love to dance (regardless of experience or skill level), DanceFit Exertainment aims to transform your workout into a party. No matter if you drop in their Chestnut Hill or East Kensington studio, you’ll get to groove in group classes like Jazz Fit, Zumba, Motown Movement, and Ballet BarreFit.

Disguise your exercise with high-energy dance fitness classes at DanceFit Exertainment. / Photograph by DanceFit Exertainment

Flaunt Fitness

Where: 1939 South 17th Street (South Philly)
Drop-in rate: $15

We’ve got to stop thinking that dance only refers to traditional forms like ballet, jazz, and tap. Flaunt Fitness reminds us that pole dancing is an amazing (and challenging!) way to get your body moving. The South Philly studio has 10 different pole dancing classes, ranging from introductory to advanced. There’s even classes focused on climbing, inverting, and dancing seductively. If the pole isn’t for you, Flaunt Fitness also offers dance fitness classes like Dance Party Cardio and Hip Hop in Heels.

Koresh School of Dance

Where: 2002 Rittenhouse Square (Rittenhouse)
Drop-in rate: $15

Since 1993, Koresh has been providing open dance classes to the public, with drop-ins ranging from ages four through seniors, and beginners through professionals. Open seven days per week, the school offers classes in ballet, hip hop, contemporary, pointe, and modern jazz, with each style taught to various skill levels. Plus, Koresh often hosts workshop series, where you can learn the ins and outs of select dance forms over the course of several weeks.

Living Arts Dance, Inc.

Where: 624 North Front Street (Northern Liberties)
Drop-in rate: $15

Located in Northern Liberties, Living Arts Dance, Inc. aims to provide adults and youth a space to freely pursue self-expression through movement. A variety of adult drop-in classes are available, including hip hop, West African, ballet fit, jazz, and a multi-genre heels class. No registration is required for adults, but you’ll have to contact the studio in order to see a current class schedule.

 

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Merge Dance Studio

Where: 4047 Cresson Street, second floor (Manayunk)
Drop-in rate: Tuition price plus an additional $3

At Merge Dance Studio, all your dance classes are taught by highly trained instructors, mainly of whom have danced in professional companies. Here, you’ll be able to take more “traditional” forms of dance like ballet, contemporary, tap, jazz, and hip hop, but Merge also runs barre fusion, stretch, and yoga classes. While the studio encourages advance registration for dance classes, they do welcome drop-ins for the tuition cost, plus an additional $3. You can find class pricing here.

954 Dance Movement Collective

Where: 954 North 8th Street (Northern Liberties)
Drop-in rate: Call studio

954 Dance Movement Collective is committed to giving community members an accessible, safe place to create, learn, gather, and heal through movement. The staffers are constantly updating their schedule with classes like contemporary modern, Fantasy Ballet, and Femme Flow, so that everyone feels welcome to dance. You can keep up with the calendar via 954’s Instagram.

The Performance Garage

Where: 1515 Brandywine Street (Spring Garden)
Drop-in rate: $10 through $22.50

I first discovered Performance Garage several summers ago when I wanted to get back into dancing but didn’t want to drive all the way up I-95 to my home studio. (I ended up taking a six-week West African series, which was amazing.) Their class offerings rotate frequently, but on the schedule you can typically find ballet, modern, and hip hop-based dance fitness classes suited to every skill level, plus wildcards like Egyptian Dance.

Philly Dance Fitness

Where: 1624 South Street (Graduate Hospital); 1301 Locust Street, second floor (Midtown Village); 1170 South Broad Street (South Philly); 1015 South Dorrance Street (Graduate Hospital)
Drop-in rate: $13 through $18

Philly Dance Fitness might be Philly’s most popular dance organization focused on “fitness and fun.” With approximately 26 genres taught seven days per week, this local dance fitness business is designed to meet the needs of everybody — as in, every type of dancer in every type of body. At any of the four locations, you can learn Bollywood, tap dancing, belly dancing, or opt for fitness-inspired classes like Piloxing, cardio pop, and dance boot camp.

Enjoy a variety of dance classes, including ballet, at Philly Dance Fitness. / Photograph courtesy of Philly Dance Fitness.

The Rock School

Where: 1101 South Broad Street (South Philly)
Drop-in rate: $15

Since 1963, the Rock School has trained students in classical ballet in order to help them go on to professional companies. The school currently offers open sessions of intermediate ballet for adults (ages 16 years and older) on Tuesday and Thursday evenings. A basic knowledge of ballet terminology is encouraged but not required for this structured continuation class.

The School of Pennsylvania Ballet

Where: 323 North Broad Street (Callowhill)
Drop-in rate: $15

Maybe you’ve always wanted to take ballet but have been intimidated to step into a class as an adult. The School of Pennsylvania Ballet is here to help. Its adult beginner ballet, which runs every Saturday morning, will give you the education and confidence you need in pursuing the technique and strengthening your muscles and mind. The school also hosts an intermediate class for anyone wishing to pursue something more quick-paced.

Society Hill Dance Studio

Where: 409 South 2nd Street (Society Hill)
Drop-in rate: No drop-in offering; $75 for a three-class package

Society Hill Dance Studio is the place to go if you’re looking to learn how to salsa, waltz, ballroom, cha-cha, swing dance, foxtrot, rumba, or execute another kind of rhythm-based technique. All styles are offered in group settings, although you can also sign up for private lessons. Plus, the instructors can even choreograph your wedding dance if you want to do more than just sway back and forth on the floor.

 

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Sound Space

Where: 2511 West Girard Avenue, second floor (Brewerytown)
Drop-in rate: $5 for Saturday drop-in tap and ballet classes

Founded in 2015 by tap connoisseur Pamela Hetherington, Sound Space originated as a studio space solely for percussive dance (aka tap dancing and hoofing). Since then, the studio has expanded to include Jazz Fit, ballet, Zumba, and flamenco. You can find the current class schedule here.

Studio 1831

Where: 1831 Brandywine Street (Spring Garden)
Drop-in rate: $15

Though mainly a yoga studio, Studio 1831 also provides belly dancing every Wednesday evening. In the 60-minute beginners class, you’ll learn foundational movements including shoulder and hip shimmies, hip drops and lifts, and figure-eights. Be sure to wear slippers or go barefoot.

Symmetry Dance Wellness

Where: 1529 South Street (Graduate Hospital)
Drop-in rate: $8 to $20

Specializing in ballet, Symmetry provides classes to a range of experience levels, including absolute beginner, basic beginner (at three skill levels), beginner (at three skill levels), and intermediate. If you wish to move your body in other ways, Symmetry also offers jazz, barre, and Pilates-focused ballet.

Urban Movement Arts

Where: 2100 Chestnut Street, second floor (Rittenhouse)
Drop-in rate: $15

Urban Movement Arts is dedicated to teaching adults genres and techniques characteristic of hip hop, American folk dance, and the African Diaspora movement. We’re talking breakdancing, Reggaeton, Latin dance fusion, Soul Train, Lindy Hop, waacking, salsa, and a slew of others. Not sure where to start? UMA’s class descriptions will help steer you in the right direction, and its $40 intro special will let you take unlimited classes for your first month.