A Greenwood dance studio is struggling to prepare for its next competition after props, costumes and the trailer used to store them were stolen.
Inspire Dance Studio instructor Kerri Sullivan is teaching more than 20 dancers new choreography for a competition next month because she already knows they won’t get everything that was stolen back.
“The magnitude of this is (huge),” Sullivan said. “We are a nonprofit; we don’t make extra money to go buy the things we need.”
The dance studio has been at its location on Loews Boulevard for about five years and has about 140 students starting at age 2 up to adults.
On May 2, just before 1:30 a.m., surveillance video showed a mid-2000s white pickup truck drive behind the dance studio near Fry Road and U.S. 31 in Greenwood. On May 11, just before 5 a.m., that same truck is seen driving away with a storage trailer, according to the police report. The business next to Inspire Dance Studio found broken locks on the ground where the trailer was parked, according to the report.
That trailer, which the studio took to competitions, had all of their costumes inside and is valued at about $1,000. Props, such as steps, wooden backdrops and mirrors, also were in the trailer at the time it was stolen, Sullivan said.
On Thursday, just 24 hours after the trailer was stolen, the dance studio got an email from a restaurant in the Fountain Square area of Indianapolis. The owner was scolding Inspire Dance Studio for using the dumpsters behind the building to throw away costumes and props, Sullivan said.
Employees went to the restaurant to see what had been dumped. Some of the items recovered from the dumpsters can be salvaged and used, but much of the props and costumes and other equipment the dance studio depends on is still with the trailer, wherever it is, Sullivan said.
Since then, the dance studio has been accepting donations and trying to find ways to raise the money for the equipment, such as the backdrop that’s needed for the next competition. And before the competition June 11, the group has to have all new costumes.
“The competitive dancers have been affected the most,” Sullivan said. “We have a big production for about 22 kids, and there’s no costumes for any of them now. And the choreography has to change because of missing props.”
The trailer did not yet have a license plate on it. Greenwood police put the trailer into the stolen vehicle database with its identification number. License plates on the truck could not be seen on the surveillance footage, according to the report.
Anyone with information is asked to call Greenwood police at 317-865-0300.
Anyone who would like to help Inspire Dance Studio can call 317-840-3979. The dance studio is accepting donations to help pay for new costumes and material needed to create props for a June 11 competition.