After 22 years in Chelsea, Dance Manhattan is no more as of this Saturday. Their landlord decided not to renew their lease.
Once again, the closure is not due to a lack of customers. The dance studio was thriving. Their popular salsa night with Jimmy Anton recently attracted 450 dancers. But the landlord doubled the rent and is seeking another kind of business.
Co-owner Elena Iannucci told me, "New York is not kind to dance studios any longer. It's the real estate market. They want a tech company here."
Back in the spring, Elena told DNA, "you have the Googles and the Yelps and the Yahoos…who are looking for space and they become the people that buildings like this one want to rent to and not necessarily to those of us in the arts who are providing dance to the public.”
She tried to find a new space, looking everywhere in town, but there was nothing affordable to be found, so she is forced to close. Many of the instructors will be moving over to the You Should Be Dancing studio. Some are flying solo, hoping their students will follow.
Tomorrow night is Dance Manhattan's final Open House Guest Night,
a free social dance party from 9:00 p.m. until midnight. The dance
showcase starts at 10pm--and there are free snacks. For $5 you get a
dance lesson at 8:00.
On Saturday, it's the drop-in tango workshop. And adios.