BERKELEY HEIGHTS, NJ – The most impressive thing about Pure Movement Dance Center is how much they love dancing.
Owners Lindsay Doris and Dana Millette really love to dance, they love to teach dance, and they love their students who are learning to dance.
Professional dancers and award-winning choreographers, Lindsay and Dana are committed to providing fun, energetic and high-caliber training to dancers of all ages, abilities and interest levels.
Long-time best friends, Lindsay and Dana are watching their dream of owning a dance studio come true every day with the success of Pure Movement, which recently opened its doors in Berkeley Heights.
“We saw a need, and it has turned out to be a really good thing,” Lindsay said, as young dancers streamed in and out of the studio, calling out hellos or goodbyes, and frequently stopping for a hug.
Both young mothers themselves, Lindsay and Dana enjoy working with children and imparting their love of dance. Pure Movement offers private lessons and group classes for kids ranging in age from 3 to 18.
“We wanted to be a studio for every kind of dancer,” said Dana, adding that classes include ballet, contemporary, lyrical, jazz, pointe, hip hop, and tap.
“We really value each dancer,” Lindsay said. “Whether they have special needs, zero experience… it doesn’t matter. Everyone deserves to dance.”
Lindsay attended the prestigious University of North Carolina School of the Arts (UNCSA) where she received her high school diploma and Bachelor of Fine Arts in Contemporary Dance. After graduation, she continued her dance education in some of the best training facilities in New York City including The Limon School, The Paul Taylor School, The Merce Cunningham School and the Peridance Capezio Center. She later became a member of the Cleo Mack Dance Project and performed in New York and New Jersey for several years. It was during her final year with the company that she decided that teaching dance was her true passion and she leapt into the world of teaching full force.
“I truly love to teach,” she said. “Touching lives is the best part of it.”
Dana was diagnosed with a brain tumor when she was 2½ that nearly ended her life. Although most of the tumor was successfully removed, her neurologists were concerned that what remained might continue to grow and affect her coordination, and her parents were urged to enroll her in a physical activity. They chose dance, and Dana, having found her passion, continued to dance even after the tumor resolved itself.
Since beginning her dance training at the age of 3, she has had the opportunity to study various forms of dance including Broadway-style tap and the ballet syllabus of the Royal Academy of Dance. At age 17, Dana was nominated for a prestigious Paper Mill Playhouse Rising Star Award for Outstanding Achievement in Choreography in her high school's production of "The Music Man." After graduating from high school, Dana continued her dance education and received her Bachelor of Fine Arts in Dance from the Rutgers University, Mason Gross School of the Arts. While at Rutgers, she was a member of University Danceworks which gave her the opportunity to work with well-known choreographers. She then went on to study massage therapy in order to increase her knowledge of anatomy and injury prevention.
Pure Movement is already becoming a part of the Berkeley Heights community and is finding more ways to get involved and to give back.
“We want to be good role models for our students,” Lindsay explained. “It’s about teaching them good community values, as well as dance.”
For more information on Pure Movement, visit www.PureMovementNJ.com or call (908) 464-7632. The studio is located at 111 Industrial Road.