Classes are offered in a variety of dance genres for ages 2 to adult in downtown Palatine, located right off the Metra train line.
Mother daughter duo Susan Ross and Brittany Mileski opened The Dance Loft at 117 W. Slade Street in downtown Palatine in the summer of 2016 – with a goal to provide training in all genres of dance, acro and aerial arts. They also encourage every student to embrace a true love for the performing arts.
“We strive to train our students in technique, proper body alignment and conditioning, and always stand by our mission statement to encourage, build self-confidence and help to develop long lasting relationships,” Ross said. “Our philosophy is that you don’t just to come to a dance studio to learn a specific dance; you come to learn how to dance.”
Class are offered for children ages 2 to adult. Genres include classical ballet, pointe, lyrical, contemporary, jazz, Hip Hop, tap, acro (tumbling and conditioning for dance), turns/jumps/leaps, aerial/silks, lyra and conditioning. Soon to be added are adult classes in aerial silks, competitive pom teams (ages 5-9) and musical theater (ages 6-14).
Years of Experience in Dance
Ross comes from a long and impressive 30-year background in dance and the performing arts. She grew up in Barrington and danced in all her high school musicals, which is what led in part to her falling in love with dance and the performing arts.
After graduating high school, she earned a degree in Dance Education which allowed her to pursue what is now her lifelong passion. Through her years of experience, she combined dance with theater; her choreography is theatrical in nature and tells a story. She credits Ruth Page Ballet, Walter Camryn and Bentley Stone, the world-renowned Gus Giordano and Judi Sheppard Missett (founder of Jazzercise) as additional influences that fortified her love for dance.
Ross was director of dance education at the Buffalo Grove Jewish Community Center (JCC) from 1993-1994, which led to her opening her own studio in Elk Grove Village. For the next 11 years, she successfully ran the business where students participated in dance competitions and performed in musicals. From there, she went on to consult and direct Chicago-based theater productions in a variety of city venues. Founding Roselle Repertoire Dance Theater was her last stop before she and her daughter Brittany (Mileski) joined hands to form their ‘love’ – The Dance Loft.
Mileski’s love for dance began when she was a small girl – encouraged along by the fact that her mother – and dance – were major influences in her life. Into her teens, she was deeply involved in the dance competition circuit for ballet, jazz, lyrical, and contemporary. Brittany was a finalist for the Australian Dance Championships and was
awarded a scholarship to Broadway Dance Center in New York City during her high school years while attending Fremd. She moved to Colorado in her 20s to dance with the renowned David Taylor Dance Theater, a professional contemporary ballet company, and was also a member of the Denver Independent Choreographer Project.
After four years in Colorado, Mileski moved back to the Chicago area to be near family. She was offered a teaching position at Gus Giordano Dance School in the youth and teen/adult divisions. While teaching there, she also began working for Giordano Jazz Dance Chicago as the Education and Outreach Coordinator. This program housed the Science and Health programs and Jazz Dance as a curriculum. Mileski then started a family with her husband Kevin, while she continued to teach, choreographed locally, and coached the Barrington High School Broncette Dance Team.
The Birth of The Dance Loft
The timing was right in 2016. Ross and Mileski walked into what is now their 2nd floor studio (pictured above) located on Slade Street (between Brockway and Greeley streets) and immediately knew it was perfect.
“The space has so much character; we love that it’s in the heart of downtown Palatine and right off of the train for students who would like to get to us via Metra from neighboring towns,” Mileski said.
The impressive, ‘loft’ is 4,600 square foot space – and includes a state-of-the-art Marley sprung floor – the gold standard for dance studios. Classes are divided by age and ability.
What’s Coming Up?
Registration for summer dance camps (ages 3-10) begins this month (February) and The Dance Loft recital will take place June 10 at 6:00 p.m. at Lake Zurich Performing Arts Center. Watch for summer class schedule in April, along with dance intensives; registration is always ongoing. The studio offers five dance competitive teams along with an aerial/acro competitive team. Dance team auditions will be held May 16.
The Dance Loft is offering a “Love is in the air” promotion…join any class by February 14th and take advantage of a special offer for the first two months of tuition. Call today to learn more!
“We really want to bring arts and the love of arts education to the suburbs and invite anyone to visit us at our beautiful studio to learn more about us,” Brittany said.
Visit thedanceloftil.com or call 847-485-7317. You can also find The Dance Loft on Facebook and Instagram.