Arts & Entertainment

Hub City Dance School Marks 15th Anniversary

Swan Lake Credits: InSpira Performing Arts and Cultural Center.
A young artist performs in InSpira's 15th-anniversary season. Credits: InSpira Performing Arts and Cultural Center.
InSpira's father-daughter dance. Credits: InSpira Performing Arts and Cultural Center.

NEW BRUNSWICK, NJ — For 15 years, aspiring dancers and musicians have honed their craft with help from InSpira Performing Arts and Cultural Center. And along the way, the dance and music academy has become something of a Hub City institution.

InSpira, based off Jersey Avenue, celebrated its anniversary with a season titled “Make An Impact,” according to the school. It recently came to an end with a music recital in June at the New Brunswick Theological Seminary and a recital for young performers and “The Big Show,” both held in Rahway.

The performances spanned a range of genres, from ballet, pointe, tap and Horton to contemporary modern, jazz, hip-hop, African and liturgical dance styles, according to the school. Young women of color performed ballet and pointe, while younger people and adults executed what the school described as a “breathtaking” rendition of the Horton. The event also included an African dance-themed father-daughter act.

Sign Up for E-News

“Onlooking crowds of family, friends and supporters were overwhelmed with technically strong and emotionally saturated performances,” InSpira wrote. “InSpira delivered a dynamic experience for all in attendance.”

But perhaps the most striking aspect of InSpira is founder and artistic director Kristine Smith’s desire to push her students to reach their full potential—often by leaving their comfort zones, in search of their “grand purpose,” according to the school.

“If the first time you attempt something, it doesn’t work out the way you planned, analyze and try again,” Smith said.

She launched InSpira in 2002. Since then, alongside her husband Leon and the studio’s staff, Smith has aimed to mold minds young and old. Children as young as 2 years old may enroll in the academy, and many stick with the program through high school, according to InSpira.

This year, the academy also celebrated 15 graduating high school seniors—its largest class yet. They’re on the cusp of attending colleges like Rutgers University, North Carolina A&T State University, Hampton University, Dickinson College, Northwestern University and the prestigious conservatory Juilliard.

For more information, click here.

TAP Into Another Town's News:

You May Also Be Interested In

Sign Up for E-News

New Brunswick

The Jaffe Briefing - March 20, 2018


NEW BRUNSWICK - The governor has targeted The Hub City as the new hub for innovation and technology. Gov. Phil Murphy was in town yesterday to meet with city, business and Rutgers officials to chat about how all the ongoing downtown investment will be a magnet for scientific and technological innovation, TAPInto New Brunswick reports. The ...

The Jaffe Briefing - March 19, 2018


TRENTON - New Jersey, one of the only employers who pays its workers for unused sick time, and then appears mystified when it struggles to balance its budget, may finally be capping sick-leave payouts.  The proposal, obviously unpopular with labor unions, has been discussed before, but not with traction. It is back in the mix again, to cap payouts ...

The Jaffe Briefing - March 16, 2018


ON THE RAILS - Another commuting mess this morning, as the antiquated Portal Bridge got stuck in the "up" position at 4:22 a.m.  That caused a bunch of rush hour trains to be cancelled between Newark and Manhattan for four hours or so.  Both NJTransit and Amtrak riders were completely screwed. You may recall the proposed Gateway ...

The Jaffe Briefing - March 15, 2018


NEW BRUNSWICK - When you rent out apartments to Rutgers students, expect some surprises. But one landlord received a shocker beyond expectation: a $8,117.07 water bill for the last three months of 2017, TAPInto New Brunswick reports. The landlord went to the City Council meeting this week, pleading that the bill on his Comstock Street ...

The Jaffe Briefing - March 14, 2018


TRENTON - Ever since we met Gov. Phil Murphy, he has been talking about the same stuff: higher taxes for the rich, saving NJ Transit, legalizing marijuana, giving more money to public schools and a higher minimum wage. So, when lawmakers went to Trenton yesterday to hear the rookie governor's first budget message, there weren't a lot of ...

The Jaffe Briefing - March 13, 2018


TRENTON - As Gov. Phil Murphy prepares to deliver his first budget address at 2 p.m. today, at the State House, observers will be curious if his proposals jive with the state's pension mess. Look for the governor to talk about campaign topics like equal pay, health care, climate change, immigration and offshore drilling, as well as the proposed ...

Rutgers to close for Wednesday storm

March 20, 2018

NEW BRUNSWICK - With the likelihood of more than a foot of snow set to dump on New Jersey, Rutgers University President Robert Barchi has declared a weather emergency closure for all three campuses: New Brunswick, Newark, and Camden.

School will be closed for students and all non-essential employees from 8 a.m. Wednesday, March 21 to 5 a.m. Thursday, March 22.

Rutgers Student on Front Lines of Orangutan Conservation, Research

NEW BRUNSWICK - Deep in a tropical forest in Borneo 15 years ago, Rutgers student Didik Prasetyo first encountered a young male orangutan that he named “Jerry.”

The great ape was one of several orangutans that Prasetyo and other researchers followed at the Tuanan Orangutan Research Station in the Mawas Conservation Area in Indonesia. Prasetyo was skeptical when colleagues said ...

RU police investigate assault on Douglass campus

NEW BRUNSWICK - Rutgers University police are investigating an aggravated assault and attempted sexual assault  reported to March 14 at 3:55 a.m. in front of Hickman Hall on the Douglass campus.


The victim, not affiliated with Rutgers University, reported that she was walking with a male whom she did not know in the area of Commercial Avenue and George ...

Hillary Clinton coming to Rutgers, event moved to RAC to handle crowd

March 21, 2018

NEW BRUNSWICK – Rutgers University’s Eagleton Institute of Politics will host former presidential nominee Hillary Rodham Clinton on March 29.

Originally scheduled for the College Avenue Gym, the event, entitled “A Conversation with the Honorable Hillary Rodham Clinton,” has been moved to the Rutgers Athletic Center “due to the extraordinary level of ...


This National Literacy Month, Let's Rein In Screen Time

March 13, 2018

Dear Editor: As speech-language pathologists across New Jersey prepare to mark “National March into Literacy Month,” let’s address the alarming number of young children who spend countless hours a day on a handheld screen.

According to a study from the Pediatric Academic Societies Meeting, the more time that children under two years spend on smartphones, tablets and ...

New Jersey Association of Health Underwriters Clinches Gold Certification

March 16, 2018

NEWARK - The National Association of Health Underwriters (NAHU) is proud to announce that the New Jersey Association of Health Underwriters has once again received Gold Certification – awarded to the strongest chapters in the nation.

NJAHU achieved Gold Certification from national headquarters underscoring how well the organization has operated and achieved its lofty goals in the ...