They’re called aerial silks and you probably saw them first in a circus or an acrobatic show.
The most famous application comes from the popular Cirque du Soleil shows around the world.
Long, flowing bolts of silk hang from ceiling beams allowing students to climb, hang, pose, and fly “a rush I guess is the only way to describe it” began class instructor Maria Tate Reed.
Tate Reed first learned of silks class as a dancer in Chicago. She told KRMG news she loved the movement and flow but got extra stoked when they fastened her into a bungee harness and shot her across the room. “I squealed with joy, I really did, I was like waaaaaaaaahh across the room” she said laughing.
Portico Dans Theatre decided to give the silks a try here in town and it's taken off, pardon the pun.
15 year old Jericho Dillard has been in the class for several months. She discovered silks through television. “I saw a performance of Pink on the Grammy’s” she explained. “I was immersed into it, researched it, and watched videos on it, everything I could possibly do.”
Jericho told us the class has helped her physically but has been even more important in another way. “I’m so much more confident in myself” she said beaming.
Jericho went on “not just silks, but outside of silks at home and at school, more open and ready to do stuff after it.”
Dillard’s mom agrees “I’ve watched her become very passionate about this and dance” she began. “This is not the daughter I thought I was going to raise and I’m ecstatic for her” she proclaimed proudly.
Both Jericho and Maria confirm that while silks are fun, they are also a very intense workout. Dillard said her first session was a real eye opener.
“The next morning I could not get out of bed to put a shirt on” she giggled. “My arms and my shoulders hurt so badly because I hadn’t used those muscles.”
But Maria assured KRMNG that beginners are both welcome and safe in the class.
“You learn the move close to the ground, you build your strength and then you spend more time in the air.”
The best news of all may be the cost. Beginner’s classes are only $15.00 an hour with a ten class pass selling for $120.00, a $30.00 discount.