Our client, Chicagoland Fred Astaire Dance Studios, continues to Waltz, Quickstep and Rumba their way through Chicagoland, growing from just two locations to a current total of eight in under 3-years time.
The explosive interest and popularity of ballroom dancing now finds more than 2000 people a week flocking to their local Chicagoland Fred Astaire Dance Studio to learn the steps and techniques pioneered by dance icon Fred Astaire, when he launched his first studio location on New York’s Park Avenue in 1947.
From captains of industry to college students, and from singles to couples, it seems everyone’s now taking to the dance floor. Fueled by the popularity of the ABC series “Dancing With the Stars,” which features celebrities and their dance partners competing for votes from judges and viewers, and movies from the hit “Shall We Dance” (2004) to “Mad Hot Ballroom” (2005) and “Take the Lead” (2006), ballroom dancing is hotter than ever — especially among baby boomers.
“What we offer is a complete escape and oasis from the rat race of hectic everyday life, with a dose of fantasy and glamour along the way,” says Rae Josephs, who together with her husband Joe, head-up the Chicagoland Fred Astaire franchise. “Many of our students say they view us as almost a Disneyland for adults. We have soccer moms who slip in for 90-minutes of gliding, twisting, and twirling across the dance floor before heading off to that day’s carpool assignments.
There are the harried business executives who opt to trade in their pumps and wingtips for dance shoes, spend 60-minutes Mamboing to pulsating Latin beats, and then scurry off to 4 p.m. business meeting.” Surprisingly, we notice an inordinate number of doctors, who are not only drawn by the escape from stress benefits, but by the fitness and workout aspects dancing offers,” said Josephs.