Kathy Morrow’s typical experience with dance was taking her daughter, Olivia, now in college, to classes and recitals around Sugar Land. That all changed when two Sugar Land studios closed in 2011.
Morrow, a Realtor, saw the closures as an opportunity to open a new studio, despite the fact that she did not have a background in dance.
“I and the other mothers felt that a new studio would benefit the community,” she said. “We also had ideas on how to teach dance differently from our previous experiences. We wanted to make it a fun thing to do.”
Morrow opened Dance Du Coeur Sugar Land Dance Studio in 2011 and now has 500 students and employs 15 instructors, including her daughter, who teaches and choreographs.
Most of the instructors are certified in the Leap ‘N Learn licensed program for creative movement and early ballet.
The 9,500-square-foot studio features four state-of-the-art, wooden dance floors and offers beginning to advanced creative movement classes for children age 2 1/2 and older as well as Mommy and Me classes for children ages 18-30 months.
Classes include ballet, jazz, tap, hip-hop, contemporary, modern, lyrical, leaps and turns, aerial silks, African dance and acro dance—a blend of dance and acrobatics.
In addition to classes, Dance Du Coeur hosts a competitive team called One Beat with 60 students in four teams separated by age. The studio brings in choreographers from across the country to help with the teams.
The school hosts one recital per year, and its One Beat dancers are often invited to showcase at charity fundraisers and special events.
Morrow said with public schools cutting arts programs, parents are outsourcing their children’s arts experiences, and she believes her studio provides an outlet for children to learn to dance and to learn other skills like confidence, coordination and how to work as a team.
“This is our way of keeping the arts alive,” she said. “It is important in child development for children to learn the arts because it gets them using the left side of their brain.”
Dance Du Coeur Sugar Land Dance Studio
19875 Hwy. 59, Sugar Land
Hours: Mon.-Thu. 3-9 p.m., Fri. 3-7 p.m., Sat. 9 a.m.-1 p.m., closed Sun.