The Dance Hall founder created a community that will live on without her


Drika Overton founded The Dance Hall in 2010 and has decided to retire and hand the reins over to the next generation. Gregory Rec/Staff Photographer

Drika Overton already was an established dancer and choreographer throughout northern New England in the 2000s when she was forced to reconcile with a geographic fact: An ideal space for music, dance and other performances in southern Maine and seacoast New Hampshire just didn’t exist.

So, she created one.

A dozen years later, The Dance Hall in Kittery is booked most Friday and Saturday nights with a variety of bands and musical acts, as well as dance classes during the week. More than that, the hall has helped to create a small but vibrant cultural scene in Maine’s southernmost town, roughly halfway between Portland and Boston.

“I think, more than anything, Drika understood that the way to succeed was to create community,” said Terie Norelli, vice president of The Dance…

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