Internationally dance academy change locations due to the rise in crime

MEMPHIS, Tenn. – An international renowned dance academy in Memphis packed up their old studio in Hickory Hill this weekend and moved further into the suburbs.

FOX13 told you in October L-Y-E Dance Academy won a pop-up shop contest to offer limited free retail space as a business start-up initiative.

COLLIERVILLE, Tenn. – A company announced in July that they will have a pop-up shop contest …

L-Y-E Dance Academy says the violence near their old spot became too much to handle.

The dance team is internationally known after performing with some of the biggest stars and brands. So in order to be the best you have to have positive space to practice and fellowship.

The L-Y-E Academy founder Ladia Yates says the positivity and safety was little to none around their studio in Hickory Hill.

“So since we’ve been here, I would have to say that was like last year. Maybe this year, I’m not sure. But it wasn’t that long ago. We came into practice. We came in practice around 12 noon and we heard gunshots. And then, yeah, there was a guy dead. Somebody shot him, like. And we had to cancel practice,” Yates said.

Yates is talking about a man shot and killed in May at the Kroger Fueling station right across the parking lot from her dance studio.

Yates says with the shootings, robberies, and break ins she’s made the safety of her kids the top priority.

So she made a decision.

“So we moved to Collierville Cares Crossing. We actually entered a contest to win a space at their mall and we won. So now we’re there and it’s such a blast and it’s such a different feeling. We don’t need security. We don’t need a security guard at the door. It just is great, is awesome. And I’m glad that we’re able to elevate and just kind of move on from this space because it really got really bad,” Yates said.

The move coming on the second anniversary of the academy’s administrator Juanita Washington’s murder.

Washing shot and killed in the parking lot of a Parkway Village Walgreens.

Yates says the new location at Carriage Crossing also gives her students and parents more options for leisure when not working in the studio.

“Matter of fact, we have Chanel and Build-A-Bear and Bath and Body Works Starbucks. So we have a lot of great, you know, businesses around us. So the parents are able to shop, eat, drink while we are at practice and the kids are always late because they’re Starbucks,” Yates said.

Yates says as she’s closing one chapter in the well accomplished story of L-Y-E another is beginning in Collierville.

“And we are very grateful and thankful to have one at conscience. Thanks to the people of Memphis for voting for us. And we’re just excited for this new chapter in 2024,” Yates said.

January 17th at noon LYE will be holding auditions at their new location in Carriage Crossing mall.

LYE is holding auditions for several different styles of dance which includes hip hop, ballet, praise dance, majorette and Memphis Jookin.

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