AERA Dance

AERA is an aerial dance company

AERA aims to expand the performance environment by creating a unique shared experience with our audience. As an aerial dance company, AERA combines original choreography and custom designed three-dimensional structures that utilize mediums such as fabric and pole in addition to other apparatus to create a multifaceted experience of performance art. AERA’s goal is to create experiential art through aerial dance.

History of AERA

October 2009: The founders of AERA create their first show together, Out Through Her.

March 2010: Out Through Her is staged for the second time. Members of the architecture firm SO-IL attend this event and invite the founders of AERA to perform on Pole Dance, an architectural installation they had created in the courtyard of MoMA PS1, during the summer of 2010.

2011: With the help of Ya-Roo Yang, AERA Dance Foundation Inc. is formed and submitted for federal recognition as a non-profit arts organization.

June 2011: AERA produces its inaugural show, New Ends.

August 2012: AERA Dance Foundation Inc. is officially recognized as a 501(c)3 charity organization.



Kyra Johannesen

Kyra Johannesen - Founder/Choreographer

Most performers live for the chance to perform. For Kyra, dancing is living. Kyra is quick to credit many talented teachers for instilling in her a respect for technique and a sense of professionalism. She began dancing in Phoenix, Arizona at the age of four and later moved to Los Angeles to study at the Edge Performing Arts Studio. Kyra has choreographed performances for international musicians, bands, and industrials, and her original work has received acclaim for the shows Women in Their Bedroom, The Dream, and Remote. Kyra discovered pole dancing and quickly embraced this form of movement. She developed and functioned as the National Pole Fitness Director for Crunch Gym from 2011-2013. She is a founder and master trainer for the elevatED teacher training that is a higher education for the physical and aerial arts. Kyra is the coowner of Body & Pole, an aerial dance institution, located in the heart of New York City. She is proud to be one of the founders and choreographers for ÆRA..

Jen James

Jen James - Founder/Choreogrpaher

Originally from Arizona, Jen moved to New York City in 2002 after graduating from Washington University in St. Louis with a B.A. in psychology and marketing. Her performance and choreography credits span all areas of the entertainment industry and she has worked with recording artists, fashion shows, videos, commercials, TV and film in addition to Off-Broadway, Broadway, stage and club performances all over the US. In 2006, Jen started MIXT Dance, a dance-based entertainment and production company that provides customized choreography, dancers, aerialists and specialty performers for special events and productions. Jen’s recent endeavors involve the integration of aerial techniques with contemporary dance and she believes she has found her niche utilizing these techniques and collaborating with Kyra and Kyle in founding AERA. She currently teaches at Body & Pole, Crunch Gyms, and New Jersey Ballet and also performs and teaches independently around the world

Kyle McBeth

Kyle McBeth - Founder/Artistic Director

Kyle was raised in Vermont. He graduated from the University of Vermont with a B.A. in English and Film Studies. Shortly after graduating he moved to New York and found work in the film and television industry. He has been the Prop Master on several films and commercials, the Production Designer on promos for MTV and the Art Director for corporate sponsored concert tours. He currently works as a Prop Stylist on fashion photo shoots for Vogue, Harpers Bazaar and V magazine with photographers Terry Richardson, Ellen Von Unwerth and Roe Ethridge. Kyle creates videos, photos and images that he wants to see, ones that he can’t find anywhere else.


As part of AERA’s mission to further the public’s understanding of the aerial arts, AERA conducts educational classes and workshops on a regular basis as part of its community outreach.

AERA also offers educational classes and workshops within specific artist in residence programs.

Covered Sky 6-2 Rehearsal0008.JPG