The Bird’s Nest is a community space dedicated to creative play, movement, and connection. Located in the heart of the growing Larkinville District of Buffalo, this facility is the first in our region to offer classes in Circus Arts that are accessible for everyone regardless of body type, age, income, or ability. From acrobatics, aerial arts, hooping, tumbling, strength training, and dance, The Bird’s Nest aims to create a safe space that promotes health through non-conventional ways of moving and collaboration.
Our Class Schedule
Our Class Schedule
Acro dance blends classical and modern dance techniques with acrobatic elements. When practiced in doubles, this can include lifts, tosses, spins, partner balance poses and floorwork. Often acro dance incorporates elements of adagio, swing dance, salsa, modern dance and more. This class will cover beginner to intermediate moves and sequences, as well as storytelling, improvisation, and fluidity of movement with and without a partner. No partner or experience required, however some acro or dance experience is encouraged.
Wear clothing that you feel comfortable moving and going upside down in. Loose fitting and flowy clothing can sometimes get in the way of moves.
Are you looking to improve your flexibility? Then this immersive experience is for you!
In this workshop we will explore flexibility through various mechanisms. First, we will isolate and strengthen the muscles in our hips and back following a strong warm-up. We will then work on our front and middle splits as well as backbends through a range of active stretching and mobility exercises. The class will end with a focus on inverting and core stability.
Beatriz Flores hails from Fajardo, Puerto Rico. Beatriz is the founder, dance instructor, and Artistic Director of the El Batey Dance Center in Buffalo. This organization has a mission to honor and share Puerto Rican culture and history through dance. Beatriz’s belief is that Bomba & Plena is the encapsulated expression of Puerto Rican history and ethos as well as a vehicle for social change and expression. Dancing to Bomba and Plena is a cultural experience, the music is lead by the deep sound of drums that invites you to dance.
All levels welcome. You do not need to come with a partner.
This class will focus on the foundational aspects of Pilobolus-based nontraditional partnering techniques, employing a collaborative improvisation-based process and critical response. These group-driven techniques and processes are foundational to Inlet Dance Theatre’s creative process. The work is physically challenging, fun, and creative.
all levels welcome
No partner needed
Instructors: Bill Wade (Founder and Executive/Artistic Director), Katie McGaha (company dancer) and Kevin Parker (company dancer)
It's time to stand up!
In standing acrobatics, bases still provide a strong, consistent platform of support for flyers...but now we'll get to see your beautiful face while you do it! Join us for this workshop in which we will explore ways to transition between the ground and the air. We'll learn the ways counterbalance plays into weight sharing, making it possible for partnerships of all sizes to progress into standing acro together. How do you get down once you're up there? We'll show you some ways that are both safe and fancy, because your exists should be fabulous too!
Pre-reqs: 3-6 months consistent acro practice. This is an intro-level class, but is probably not suitable for complete beginners. Please reach out to us if you have any questions.
Flashy Crowd-Pleasing Moves (Sunday)
This intermediate class covers circus-style moves that are guaranteed to ‘wow’ an audience by demonstrating impressive athleticism, dynamic body language, and control of the hoop. Techniques to be covered include fancy starts/pick-ups, escalator variations, an acro-minded foot hooping sequence, hand spins/helicopter, the waist wrap (AKA “booty pass”), and the notorious body roll to foot pass. In addition to these, coaching for the most effective use during performances will be provided.
Fundamentals of Hoop Dance (Saturday)
This all-levels class aims to leave participants with the tools they need to build a foundation of hoop technique. Together, we will cover: finessing waist hooping, passing, hand hooping and transitions, isolation variations, getting comfortable traveling through space/dancing with the hoop, and foot hooping. Students will leave with a repertoire of drills to practice at home. This class is perfect if you think you "can't hoop," if you are a beginner who needs direction, or if you are a skilled hooper who wants to reconnect with the basics and build control.
In this class, we will create interesting and inspired movement without tending toward looking "wrappy." We do this by understanding all of the variables and manipulating them in a non-manual way, thinking backwards or inside out and creating from a place of organized intention, and combining multiple strands, tension, tail and vertical space can achieve intricate patterning, shapes and dynamics. In this workshop we’ll explore the avenues that arise from combining these elements, while working fluidly to maintain contour continuation. Students can expect to work on thready asymmetrical ascending sequences, elaborate set ups, web-like sculptural moments and direction changing stacking drops.
Prerequisites: Ability to identify 4 basic wraps: Catcher/S-lock/Figure 8,Hiplock, comfort working with split fabric; basic knowledge of belay, double thigh hitch (mighty mouse) are recommended
This workshop will explore how various climbs and skills [that gain height] can be strung together in a logical and progressive way to yield different effects, patterns and unity in design. So much more than just climbing the fabric, we will intertwine various ideas and efficiencies to create a seamless and dynamic
ascension. Together we will invert, thread, release, spiral and beat your way to the top!
Level: Intermediate or Int + on fabric
Pre-reqs: ability to stay in the air for 2 minutes and easily invert, comfort with knee climb, basic beats and various Russian climbs a plus!
The extremely fun practice of banquine involves a strong understanding of timing, communication and how to properly use the spring effect created by the flyer and two bases. We will begin to develop a strong foundation for basics, entrances, exits, jumps, and how to properly catch. This class is not for beginners and is only open to those that have a very strong and consistent acro practice. Proper basing, flying and spotting technique will be addressed.
>>>Pre-Reqs: a confident and strong two high that needs little to no spotting, standing foot to hand that needs to little to no spotting, without any assistance on entering into it from spotters.
All Levels Standing Acro Dance Lifts
This All Levels Standing Acro class will combine dynamic movement and flowing dance lifts into one class that will give you ultimate bragging rights on the dance floor! Seamlessly bridge together different acro moves while learning proper basing, flying and spotting technique.
>>>Prerequisites: None! Beginners are absolutely welcome! You do NOT need a partner to attend this incredible class!
Trio Acro Swings
This incredibly fun class will involve three people per move, two bases and one flyer! Learn a lot of unique and very accessible skills that will begin to make your swing practice more dynamic, all while opening up more opportunities to break away from the basics. Brand new entrances, transitions and exits will be addressed so you can begin to develop and add new sequences to your skill set! The Trio Acro Swing does require a few months of consistent acro practice, so that you may benefit fully from this class.
>>>Pre-Reqs: a confident two high with little to no spotting