By James Cullum
ALEXANDRIA,VA- Can’t find the words? Tell someone what you mean with your body. And look no further than Local Motion Project in Alexandria to teach you the international language that transcends those pesky barriers often found with speech.
“Movement can help you understand yourself and the world around you,” Local Motion Project founder and Executive Director Sara Lavan told The Zebra. “it helps people feel connected and safe. The body communicates in so many ways and there is a lack of human connectivity in the world we live in these days.”
In April, Lavan and her partner Kylie Murray were up against the wall in their seven-year-old business at 2377 South Dove Street. Their LLC, Local Motion Studio, was failing and they needed $45,000 to stay afloat. Unless they were given a giant gift the studio would have to close on May 31. So, after turning the company into a nonprofit, Local Motion Project was founded in order to diversify sources of revenue and receive donations. The gamble worked, and on April 10, Local Motion Project received more than they needed – $48,000 to be exact in SpringToACTion’s annual day of giving. In fact, the fundraiser ended up resulting in more than $2.1 million donated to local nonprofits.
“We’re growing at a rapid rate. We’re doing great. This is the preferred model,” Lavan said. “You forget about the overarching language of movement. Alexandria needs a space where movement was approached differently, a place of creativity, a place to expand the human experience beyond fitness ideals. I just believe in creating better humans. You want to make an impact, to make something outlast you, and that’s my art and my own children.”
Adults can choose from dance and fitness classes, aerial classes and workshops, such as beginner tap. But it’s not all for big kids! Local Motion Project is currently working with a number of local elementary schools teaching children movement, and is looking to expand to outdoor programming. Their summer camp program just wrapped up and their dance school covers modern, ballet, jazz, and creative dance. Class prices range from $12-$20, and discounts are given for buying year-long packages.
Find out more about Local Motion Project at localmotionproject.org