Downtown Dance & Movement
No, running away from your problems doesn’t count as cardio. But dancing them away does at Downtown Dance and Movement, an impressive four studio dance space with sprung wood floors and top quality sound systems. Upon pushing through their doors, you leave the grueling hustle and bustle of the ever-roasting LA streets and enter a shameless oasis for self-expression. Each dance studio hosts any number of experiences — from ballet to tango to Afro-funk, every one of which will make you sweat with a smile. Classes are designed to be accessible to all, with “movements simple and primary enough that any level mover can come get a great cardio workout” explains Kimberley Blank, a Downtown Dance and Movement instructor who boasts an impressive resume, including starring in MJ’s iconic “Thriller” music video. It’s impossible not to have fun while dancing along to Kim’s accessible hip-hop choreography — like all of Downtown Dance’s instructors, she radiates positivity and cheerfully welcomes everyone, quickly making you as comfortable as a student who’s been taking her class for years.
What’s incredible about Downtown Dance and Movement is its effort to “cross pollinate all types of dance,” as owner Linda Valentino eloquently puts it. “Here, often a classically trained ballet dancer will walk past a Salsa class and want to try it,” and vice versa, says Valentino. Popular often-pricier workouts including yoga and barre are offered as well, only kept at wallet friendly rates like the rest of their classes. The studios are also available for rent for rehearsals, dance parties and other events. Furthermore, getting somewhere has never been easier: DTLA’s complimentary concierge shuttle service can pick you up and drop you off at the studio as long as you reserve your trip thirty minutes in advance.
The effect of the space is an all-encompassing Angeleno melting pot, exercising and socializing through timeless genres of dance. Downtown Dance and Movement is the place to sashay, twerk, twirl, and tap your troubles away anytime. Because seriously, doesn’t everyone need a little Footloose warehouse moment to get through the day?
Written by Lucy Rogers-Ciaffa
Photographed by Jack Strutz