Winter classes run from January 6 through May 3.
Classes are $375 – $475 for the full semester and are pro rated when you register. Drop ins available for $30/each. Payment plans and financial aid also available!
New student? Enter your email below to get $30 off your first class!
Tuesdays 7 – 8 PM (All Levels)
Fridays 1 – 2 PM (Beginner)
Saturdays 9 – 10 AM (All Levels)
Our signature “Learn to Fly” class. Build strength and flexibility while learning sequences on trapeze, lyra, Spanish web, and aerial silks. Discover your daring side as you execute a variety of climbs, inversions, and drops.
Our Aerial Arts classes are perfect for performers looking to add new skills to their arsenal as well as for non-performers seeking a unique physical challenge.
Aerial Composition & Choreography
Collaborate with other aerialists to build aerial sequences. Work with other students to create complex choreography. AC&C trains students to perform with endurance and precision as they build toward a final sequencing project. Teacher permission required.
Chinese Pole, an advanced apparatus in a variety of circus acts, increases core and upper body strength. Students will climb, slide, and hold poses on this static pole, working toward moves such as “the flag,” “the donut,” and more!
If you already have an exercise regimen and are interested in increasing your core and upper body strength – ditch the gym! This class replaces upper body day. A perfect class for CrossFit enthusiasts.
Experience all things acrobatic in our Circus Arts classes! Each week includes training in the foundations of tumbling, ground skills, and aerial skills. This class is perfect for those interested in training strength, flexibility, and balance across a wide variety of skills: gymnastics, silks, lyra, trapeze, Spanish web, rolling globe, juggling, stilt walking and more.
Upgrade your workout regimen! Join us for a truly unique fitness experience that incorporates circus apparatus to train muscles you didn’t even know you had. Think squats...but in an aerial silk! This class is beginner-friendly and open to all fitness levels.
This introductory class focuses on humor created through character choices, improvisation, games, object partnering, and the revelation of character. Learn techniques that will encourage you to be more bold and playful, rather than cautious on stage!
The class is taught by Adrian Danzig, who served as the Producing Artistic Director of 500 Clown, a Chicago-based Clown Theater ensemble that toured nationally. Adrian was also an early Neo-futurist, a founding member of Redmoon Theater, and a clown with Big Apple Circus Clown Care.
Flexibility & Contortion
Contortion: Thursdays 6 – 7:30 PM (Advanced)
Looking to increase flexibility, but now sure where to start? This class is specifically designed to create meaningful improvements in student mobility. Students learn a stretching sequence that increases healthy circulation and helps prevent injuries (both in athletic work and everyday life).
Students opting for the contortion class stay for an additional 30 minutes to train advanced flexibility and incorporate these skills into acrobatic formations.
Mondays 8:30 – 10 PM (Advanced)
People of all physical backgrounds are welcome in this multi-level class! Students work with an instructor to push their individual tumbling abilities and develop increased coordination and agility.
Advanced tumblers remain an additional 30 minutes to train more intensively.
Start from scratch and learn the fundamentals of flight in inversions training. Gain access to your strength and confidence to de-mystify headstands, forearm stands & handstands.
In this foundations class for Northwestern students, students gain an introduction to Circus Arts, developing a basic skill set. All experience levels welcome. Apparatuses and skills taught include tumbling, aerial silks, lyra, trapeze, spanish web, globe, juggling, stilt walking, and tight wire.
Throw, climb, balance, and fly! Blend techniques from partner acrobatics, contact improv, aikido, and ballroom dance to expand your partnering skills. Increase your understanding of your own body and how to work with others in this all-level class. Come with a partner or come solo!
Advanced Silks students master wraps, drops, and transitions to develop advanced routines and choreography. This class teaches technique alongside the theory required to build new material.
Because class builds on skills from previous aerial training, students must have taken two previous aerial classes or receive instructor approval.
Requiring a light touch and great precision this quick and beautiful weapon style is considered by many to be the pinnacle of European swordplay. This class will focus on the subtle blade play and footwork that make this weapon unique. Students will have the opportunity to take the Society of American Fight Directors skills proficiency test in small sword at the end of this course.
“I attempted the foot web after refusing it for two years of beginner’s classes due to fear. I finally ‘did’ it and I was glad I overcame that fear. It was an important milestone for me as a 52 year old with no background in the gymnastic sports.”
– Joel L.
Yes! Adult students can purchase $30 drop ins online or over the phone.
Families who are considering taking their first class at the Gym can purchase a $30 taster class for their child. Tuition can be pro-rated should you decide to enroll in the remainder of the term. Please note that this option is only available for purchase over the phone: 847-328-2795
In general, students start with and repeat recreational-level classes until they develop a higher level of confidence, strength and proficiency. While a background in dance, gymnastics or other athletic pursuits will be an advantage, circus arts and physical theatre employ our muscle groups in different ways than other activities and it most often takes several sessions for students of all ages to adapt and master skills necessary to move to the advanced level.
Students need to receive instructor permission to take advanced classes and in some cases, advancement is subject to passing a skills test. If you feel ready to advance to an advanced-level class, we encourage you to talk to your instructor, who can assess if you are ready.
We recommend wearing clothing you are comfortable moving in, that is not too loose fitting.
Close-toed gym shoes should be worn to Parkour and all Circus Arts classes to use during stilting and unicycling. All other classes require bare feet.
Yes! If you register online after the class has started, your tuition will be automatically pro-rated.
Unfortunately, we are unable to allow make-ups for missed classes, as it makes it challenging for us to ensure a safe ratio of students to instructors in each class.
At the Actors Gymnasium, we operate on a philosophy that using multiple apparatus in conjunction with each other builds the increased strength, confidence, and performance skills critical to help artists achieve a level of competence that allows for the meaningful concentration on a specialized skill or apparatus. Because of that, most of our classes teach multiple apparatus.
Foundational skills remain constant from one apparatus to another. Wraps, climbs, hangs and most baseline tricks can be learned and improved on any apparatus. Until students reach an advanced skill level with sufficient strength and knowledge, the benefits of specializing will be minimal.
If you are ready to start focusing on one particular apparatus, we encourage you to consider taking private lessons with us.
No, the parking lot at the Noyes Cultural Arts center is easy for students to be dropped off and picked up before and after class.
For those who want to stay nearby, there are benches throughout the building where you can wait for your child as well as Tallmadge Park just outside our doors.
No, parents are not allowed to sit in on their child’s class, unless the class is a parent-participation class.
Parents, friends and guests are invited to attend class on parent observation days only, which takes place on the last class in each session. An email reminder will be sent.
A full refund, minus the $25 administrative fee, will be issued for students cancelling prior to the start of the first class session. If cancellation is made prior to the start of the third class session a refund, minus the $25 administrative fee and the prorated cost of the first classes, will be issued.
We do not offer any refunds after the the third class session has taken place.