The New Year is a time for renewal, and what better place than New York City to nurture and develop refreshing new talents that maybe you didn’t know you had?
Are you funny? Can you tell a story? Do you dance or sing, or have you always wanted to? Here are five ways NYXT.nyc and our content partners can help you bring out the inner you this year.
Learn to Dance with the Greatest
Or maybe just take a Zumba class. Either way, the world-renowned Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater has a way to get you moving.
At the Ailey School, you can opt for a professional training track designed to prepare you for a career on stage or just pop into one of the regular drop-in sessions designed for trained dancers.
If your dance skills are a little more, um, undiscovered, The Ailey Extension on West 55th Street offers classes for kids ages 2 through 15 and separate tracks for the 16 and older set. Even if you have never popped a recognizable dance move in your life you can drop in for a wide variety of classes and dance-related workout sessions offered daily. Numerous workshops can also immerse you in styles ranging from ballet to West African dance, so no matter what it is, you can find your groove.
Learn to Play the Gaelic Way
The Irish Arts Center on West 51st Street can help you find the Irish in your soul even if you carry not a drop of blood from the Emerald Isle. Adult classes are available in the flute, fiddle, guitar, concertina, Celtic harp, bodhrán, tin whistle and bagpipes, along with voice lessons and classes in Irish dance, Irish language and the literary arts, all with a Celtic lilt. There are classes for kids, too, so the whole family can join in.
Learn to Be Seriously Funny
Improv classes at the Magnet Theater on West 29th Street can help you transport your already sharp wit to the stage. Learning the serious basics of comedy may not be as fun as laughing, but it beats crying any day. And you’ll find plenty of laughs along the way, too.
Learn to Tell Stories with Pictures
The Educational Video Center teaches high school-age kids how to build powerful documentary stories about the world around them. Kids in the program have produced award-winning work on issues ranging from the criminal justice system to bullying and depression. The center’s Youth Documentary Workshop teaches kids directly, and it has programs for teachers, too.
Learn to Take Great Pictures with a Challenge
Sometimes the best way to learn is by doing, and a little motivation can help you get better.
The Wildlife Conservation Society — the owner and custodian of the Central Park Zoo — holds a regular photography contest. Basically, the society issues an assignment and professional photographers judge the results to find a winner. Not as easy as it sounds or looks, but very motivational.
If documentary work is more your bent, try shooting a clip for Streetfilms to advocate alternative transportation, either here in the city or around the world. If you don’t know what that means, a short tutorial can get you started.
These are some great ways to get started on your 2017 road to inner enrichment, but it is by no means an exhaustive list. New York is one of the most vibrant cities in the world. Stay tuned to NYXT.nyc to keep on top of the best the great city has to offer.