We enable the creation, study and performance of dance; We sustain artists, audiences and the community through programs that connect movement and ideas; We celebrate the wonder and curiosity of dance for all.
The Dance Complex is a unique arts center where professional, pre-professional and recreational movers can find a multiple variety of movement and dance classes.
In the twenty-plus years of its existence, The Dance Complex has become a recognized regional center for dance and movement arts. The Work Study Exchange Participant program provides The Dance Complex with a 110-person workforce who man the front desk, and clean and maintain the studios, affording the participants with valuable study in dance in exchange for their work.
The Dance Complex is housed in an 1884-circa, 5-story building, originally built as meeting rooms for the Independent Order of Odd Fellows, a philanthropic fraternal brotherhood. By the mid to late 20th century, the building became used as aerobic/fitness and dance studios known as Joy of Movement Center. In 1991, when the fitness entity experienced financial problems and closed its doors, a group of local dance-makers, led by founder Rozann Kraus, negotiated with the City of Cambridge and lending institutions to maintain the building as a dance center.
Then, as now, faculty and resident artists include world-renowned teachers and dance-makers. From its early days, a team of Work Study students along with the founding faculty donated their time to create a studio administration that was artist-centric, striving for affordable rental rates for teachers and dance-makers. A studio "time-share" system was created to put the profits from classes in the hands of the teachers; in turn, class fees to students were kept below the local and national norm. This model continues today.