CRYSTAL LAKE – Things are looking up at Summers Academy of Dance.
The business recently moved into its new, state-of-the-art dance center at 5186 Northwest Hwy., Crystal Lake. The dance studio provides instruction in ballet, pointe, jazz, hip hop, tap, lyrical and – coming later this month – aerial dance.
Owners Gary and Vicki Summers operated Summers Academy of Dance for 18 years at 19 E. Berkshire Drive in Crystal Lake. With more than 300 students, the academy outgrew its 2,700-square-foot space.
The new, 4,000-square-foot location will allow Summers Academy to spread its wings.
“We needed to expand to raise the quality of our facility and technology in the studio to stay current with dance trends,” Gary Summers said.
“The move allows us to offer our current curriculum with expansion to new art forms, like aerial dance.”
Rigging for the aerial dancers will be installed in the ceiling’s steel I-beam, 25-feet above the studio floor.
“We can offer more,” said Vicki Summers, who also serves as the academy’s executive director. “Our goal is having fun and getting a good education in dance and the performing arts, if that’s what you endeavor to do.”
The new facility features three dance studios, floor-to-ceiling windows, professional sprung floors, and 10-foot tall mirrors. The custom-built Marley floors and dance spaces are designed for injury prevention. There’s comfortable viewing for parents, Wi-Fi access, designated studying areas, and digital surround sound.
Parents can watch dance practice through the windows or on a flat-screen TV in the lounge. Four cameras capture the action on the dance floor.
Summers has a staff of 15, which does not include the five or six master instructors and professionals who come up from the city to teach classes on advance techniques and choreography.
The academy’s three resident companies – The Berkshire Ballet Theatre, Starr Dancers and Summers Dance Crews – “allow every student the opportunity to find the right choice for their personal interests and goals,” Vicki Summers said.
The dancers will be on stage at 7 p.m. June 14, and at 3 and 7 p.m. June 15 at the Raue Center for the Arts, 26 N. Williams St., Crystal Lake. Tickets for Summers Academy’s 17th annual show “Raising the Barre – 2013,” are available at Rauecenter.org.
The academy’s six-week summer session begins June 24. June 24-29 is an “open house” to try a complimentary week of classes. New students receive 20 percent off their tuition if they register immediately following their class.
Vicki Summers said they are expanding the preschool program, and also offering liturgical dance, “a visual interpretation of the Bible.” She said liturgical dance has been performed at various congregations, including Bethany Lutheran, where the Summers are church members.
“At Easter we choreograph dance to match the choir singing the Hallelujah Chorus,” she said.
* * *
Summers Academy of Dance:
What: A dance studio providing instruction in ballet, pointe, jazz, hip hop, tap and lyrical, and featuring three resident companies, including The Berkshire Ballet Theatre.
Where: 5186 Northwest Hwy., Crystal Lake.
Information: Call 815-477-0033, or visit summersacademyofdance.com