Dave Moore Photography
Participants of a previous year's St. Louis Barre Crawl dance in CKDC's studio.
On a recent Tuesday evening, a flock of dancers, both company members and newbies, congregate throughout the open studio of Consuming Kinetics Dance Company, gearing up for a contemporary class with Arica Brown, Executive and Artistic Director.
Brown marks the warm-up combination on the floor for the dancers of all skill levels to learn before sound checking Florence + the Machine, commencing the flow of movement.
Brown’s signature contemporary dance class is one of more than 30 classes offered this weekend as part of CKDC’s annual St. Louis Barre Crawl
, a fundraiser community dance event. This is the fifth year Brown has organized the event out of CKDC, a professional dance company in the Central West End with classes for every skill level. Friday’s kick-off event will be held at Rec Hall, a game bar in St. Charles, before the two full days of dance and fitness classes held in neighboring companies and studios in and around the Grand Center neighborhood.
“It’s a very rich weekend,” Brown says. With belly dancing, yoga, trapeze, salsa, krump, modern, pole and many others, there are a plethora of options. The classes are an hour each, and Brown has built in 30 minutes between sessions for a break and driving time. Though there are fewer crawlers than previous years, she’s eager to carry out the same culture.
“It’s just a beloved St. Louis event,” she says. “Most years, we have people traveling from all over the Midwest to come to this event and book hotels and stay for the weekend. I’m excited to see people get in a room together and do something fun without the pressure of it being advanced or complicated dance classes.”
Saturday’s pass is $60, Sunday’s pass is $55 and the two-day pass is $100. After purchasing a pass, CKDC will send you a Google form for you to register for the day’s classes so that studio capacities can be maintained. All teachers participating in the crawl are volunteers in order to increase the fundraising goal of the event: need-based scholarships for children to attend CKDC’s Kids’ Dance and Art Camp, a four-week, all-day program.
“For our summer camp program, about 50 to 75 percent of our students are on a partial to full scholarship,” Brown says. The camp offers early drop-off and late pick-up times and runs from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. the weeks of July 12 to Aug. 6.
In addition to the Barre Crawl’s class offerings, crawlers will also receive a discount at Revel Kitchen for the weekend, and a chance to use BioFit STL’s full body scan for a comprehensive set of data regarding your body shape, body composition and fitness level.
Above all, it’s a weekend to explore the multifaceted world of dance. While the funds will support and sponsor the kids attending the summer camp, CKDC’s policy is that they won’t turn anyone unable to afford the camp away.
“So if we don’t have a fund and we don’t have a subsidy for their scholarship, and they can show that there’s a need, we’re still going to make it happen for them,” Brown says. "Because we want any child that wants to dance to be able to come in and experience this.”
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