Moving Forward Campaign

Logo-CapitalCampaign-SquareCreating a Place Where the Arts, Artists and the Community Thrive

Dance Place’s capital campaign, called “Moving Forward,” is now complete! By raising $4.5 million, we expanded and renovated our beloved facility, as well as created free community programming, Art on 8th. The spirit of creativity thrives in our Brookland/Edgewood neighborhood! Our deep gratitude goes out to everyone who supported this ambitious venture.

Take a look at where we came from and where we are now!



Photo by David Dowling.



Moving Forward Capital Campaign – Final Report


Our facility

On June 6, 2014 we moved back into our completed facility just in time for our annual DanceAfrica, DC Festival and our summer camp. Through the wonderful design of Hickok Cole Architects, guidance of our owner’s representative Richard Pilkinton and hard work of Bognet Construction Company, we have expanded our building from 7,000 to 10,500 square feet. Our expanded and totally renovated facility now includes a greatly improved theater, second floor studio, wonderful backstage area, expanded offices, inviting lobby, café area for refreshments and vibrant exterior.

The Morris and Gwendolyn Cafritz Foundation Theater

Our state of the art theater supported by The Morris and Gwendolyn Cafritz Family Foundation helps us serve artists, audiences and students with more comfort and grace. Renovations included a new sprung floor, specially designed retractable steel risers, 144 comfortable theater seats, hard-wired lighting grid, improved theater equipment and the enclosed Philip L. Graham Fund Technical Booth. Behind the stage, our well-lit, mirror-filled dressing room provides expanded space for our talented artists to prepare (funded generously by an Anonymous donor).

Second Floor

Named after our Founding Director’s father, the Hyman M. Perlo Studio has increased our capacity for serving artists with vital free or affordable rehearsal space, provided a home for the Dance Place Step Team, educational space for our teen Junior Staff program, room for additional children’s classes and new green room space for performers.

Our second floor expanded Prince Charitable Trusts Office Suite includes three enclosed offices, a new wing for our youth programs, space for our production staff and the Janney corner meeting space.

Lobby & Café

Our bright new Howard and Geraldine Polinger Family Foundation Lobby provides a welcoming atmosphere for students and parents during daytime classes, professional dancers before rehearsal and audiences attending weekend performances. Café Florence is buzzing before the performances, at intermission and after the performances, as patrons enjoy their beverages and mingle with artists.


The outside of our building with the Christopher Janney tower and “Touch My Building” installation is a favorite for children and adults alike who are encouraged to place their hands on our building and enjoy the collage of sounds that respond.



Dance Place’s Art on 8th is bringing vibrancy to the Monroe Street Market Stage, Arts Walk at Monroe Street Market, the Bus Boys and Poets Plaza and Dance Place campus. People of all ages enjoy free outdoor music and dance performances presented May through September and year-round arts workshops called GET CREATIVE. Families enjoy Art on 8th as a weekly destination for fun, culture and making new friends.

Our partners at Abdo Development/Bozzuto Group and the Monroe Street Market team have been generous hosts. Art on 8th brings vitality to the neighborhood as visitors and residents gather together to share the arts.


Coming soon!

Our vision for an arts campus will conclude with developing the 8th Street Arts Park between Dance Place’s facility and the adjacent Brookland Artspace Lofts. The Park will be a site for public art commissions, overhead lighting, artistic seating, flexible stage space, comfortable flooring for creative play, film screenings and community gardening. The Park is being designed by Lee & Associates Landscape Architects, with leadership from a wonderful volunteer steering committee and funding from The Kresge Foundation. Look for the Grand Opening of the Park in September 2016 and follow our progress at


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Header photo: PEARSONWIDRIG DANCETHEATER by Zachary Z. Handler