When Cynthia King shuts the door for the final time to her dance studio at 1256 Prospect Avenue in Windsor Terrace this week, it will, she said, be a bittersweet moment — a goodbye to the space through which thousands of dancers have passed since 2002 and a hello to a new chapter for the artistic home that has grown tenfold over the past 13 years.
The Cynthia King Dance Studio is permanently leaving the Windsor Terrace site this week and consolidating all of their operations at their studio at 21 Snyder Avenue, between Flatbush and Bedford Avenues, which they opened last year.
“It was great being on Prospect, but we really did outgrow that space,” Cynthia told us this week. “This is our last week of classes there — it’s emotional. Thousands of kids have created so many works in there, and so many dancers have developed in those rooms.”
Still, the new space was crucial, Cynthia said, as her studio has grown from having about 30 students and just herself as a teacher to attracting 300 students each year, in addition to employing 10 teachers and an administrative staff at the school that teaches everything from ballet to African dance.
“The space at Snyder — we designed it for dance,” said Cynthia, who has been dancing professionally since 1978 and teaching since 1986. “It has spectacular features, like sprung floors, and it’s very big and very spacious. There’s even an outdoor space. We’ve been here for the past year, and families have made it work, and it’s a very welcome addition to the neighborhood here.”
The expansive 4,000-square-foot Snyder studio, completed in 2014, includes high ceilings, a spacious lobby, large viewing windows, a changing room, and a versatile studio performance venue.
“The transition has been smooth so far,” Cynthia told us. “It’s going to be so much better for us as a school and company.”
Plus, Cynthia stressed in a letter she sent to the community (which you can read here) that while the studio won’t be in Windsor Terrace, they’ll still be a part of the neighborhood.
“Rest assured that we will remain an active and lively presence in the [Kensington-Windsor Terrace] community, performing at local schools and playgrounds,” she wrote.
In addition to the families she’s long worked with, the new spot has already attracted attention from the site’s immediate surroundings and Cynthia has forged a wonderful relationship with the nearby PS 6 (43 Snyder Avenue).
If you haven’t gotten a chance to check out the new Snyder Avenue studio, Cynthia let us know they’ll be giving free tours of the space during the Flatbush Avenue Street Festival on Sunday, June 14. The tours will take place from 1-3pm.
In addition to the new studio, Cynthia has several other things to be excited about these days, including next week’s launch of her line of vegan ballet slippers.
“We’re the home of the only cruelty-free ballet slippers,” Cynthia said, adding that her new shoe is a four-way stretch canvas ballet slipper.
As if that wasn’t enough, Cynthia also recently received the Distinguished Alumni Award from the Boston Conservatory, where she trained. The award is one of many accolades that she has received, for both her dance work and her including a Neighborhood Achievement Award from Mayor Bill de Blasio and credit from the New York Department of Education for developing, as the DOE said, “one of the most comprehensive dance programs” in the area, among others.