History

DC Wheel Productions, Inc. / Dance Place was founded by Carla Perlo and Steve Bloom in 1978 as an educational and performing arts company, which toured the public schools in the Greater DC Metropolitan area. In 1980, DC Wheel Productions, Inc. established a studio and theater under the name Dance Place in Adams Morgan and has been doing business under that name ever since. Dance Place purchased its permanent home in Brookland / Edgewood in 1986, converting an abandoned warehouse into a thriving community cultural center. In 2014, the building underwent major renovations and expansion as part of the organization’s Moving Forward capital campaign. The final stage of our Arts Campus was completed in 2016, the 8th St Arts Park, which converted the asphalt alley between our building and the adjacent Brookland Artspace Lofts into a vibrant public space. Today, our campus includes three training and rehearsal studios, a 144-seat theater, two offices, a children’s center, the 8th St Arts Park and housing for artists and interns.

Dance Place’s rich history with innovative programming has earned the organization a national reputation for building the field of dance, creative placemaking and providing model educational programs for youth. Dance Place has been heralded as the “hub of dance activity in Washington, DC” (Alan Kriegsman, The Washington Post). In 2011, Dance Place received the DC Mayor’s Arts Award for Outstanding Contribution to Arts Education and in 2013, Founding Director Carla Perlo received the DC Mayor’s Art Award for Excellence in Service to the Arts.