Ever Wanted to Learn How to Ballroom Dance?

October 15, 2008 at 3:55 AM (Dance, Happenings) (, )

You’re in luck – if you’re in the Boston area, that is.  I’d like to take this time to shamelessly promote a studio grand opening taking place this weekend in Newton, Massachusetts.

Balera ~ School of Ballroom Dance has been open for a few weeks now, but it’s officially opening its doors to the world of aspiring dancers on Saturday, October 18th, and 7.30 P.M.  Not only will guests have the opportunity to enjoy a tour of the stunning, 4000 sq. ft. studio (the largest ballroom studio in the Boston area, I may add), but they will also have the pleasure of meeting the studio staff, light refreshments, and dancing until midnight.  In addition, there will be some pretty awesome performances.

Jose DeCamps & Joanna Zacharewicz are current World Professional Rhythm Champions, and I could agree with their title more.  Granted, I’m a nobody in the dance world, so my opinion doesn’t matter too much there, but at least I know what’s going on when I watch Dancing with the Stars or So You Think You Can Dance?, which counts for something, right?  Slightly more seriously, I have seen these two on television, and I was in the audience when I witnessed them earning a title on PBS’s America’s Ballroom Challenge.  Every time that I have seen them perform and compete, Jose & Joanna have been on fire.  I’ve also been lucky enough to take some lessons with them, and not only are they exquisite teachers, but they are also incredibly cool people.  I’d found with some ballroom dancers, the higher they climb on the dance community totem pole, the snootier they get.  I won’t mention names.  Jose & Joanna are no such example.  I’ve sat with them at a bar, just drinking and socialising, and for people of their stature to be fraternising with the likes of me says something, and that’s that I’m wicked awesome.  . . . Just kidding.  It says that they haven’t lost their heads to the fame and prestige that can go with being as skilled and talented as they are, and I really appreciate that.  I’ll try to include a couple links below for you:

Jose & Joanna’s MySpace page: http://profile.myspace.com/index.cfm?fuseaction=user.viewprofile&friendid=300022458

Also performing this weekend are Benito Garcia & his student, Rick Lake.  Benito & Rick are a teacher-student duo, or as we call it in Rhinestone Land, Pro-Am performers.  Benito competes(ed?  Dunno if he still does . . .) professionally with another partner, and does performances with Rick, his student.  They’ve performed internationally, and understandably: the charisma these guys bring to the floor is pretty impressive.  I’ve also had the priviledge of seeing these folks off the dance floor, and once again, they’re nifty in real life, too.  Unfortunately, I couldn’t find a video of them online, so you’ll just have to use your imagination.  . . . Or you could come to Balera this Saturday and see them for yourselves.

Last that I officially know of performing this weekend is Balera Showdance, formerly known as RLJ Showdance.  Twelve amateur dancers have worked together for months putting a formation performance piece together (think “synchronised swimming,” only for ballroom dancers and cooler looking) that they have showcased as locally as Cambridge and as far out as Las Vegas.  Again, a very grounded, charismatic group (are you noticing a trend, yet?).  The group recently retired its most recent routine, but it’s resurrecting it for this weekend’s grand opening.  It should be a good show.  Check it out below for a preview:

Find more videos like this on My Balera

I’m pretty certain that there will be other performances this weekend, but I’d rather not announce anything unless I know for sure.  Oh, and did I mention that this wonderful, wonderful event is free?  If that’s not incentive, then I don’t know what else to say.  Semi-formal attire is suggested.  That all said, let’s move onto the studio itself.

Balera ~ School of Ballroom Dance
105 Rumford Ave.
Newton, MA 02466
T: 617.969.2280
F: 617.969.2287
E: info@baleraballroom.com

I’ll try to keep this from sounding too advertisement-y.  The studio offers group classes, private instruction and practise space seven days a week, parties every Friday night, and competitors’ practise on Sundays.  Within all that jazz, Balera caters to competitive dancers, social dancers, brand new dancers, and wedding couples.  And now for the specifics: if you ever wanted to learn how to waltz, tango, Viennese waltz, foxtrot, quickstep, cha cha, samba, rumba, paso doble, jive, swing, bolero, mambo, salsa, merengue, Argentine tango or West Coast swing, well, you guessed it: Balera offers it.  If you’ve seen it used in a dancing show, you can find it in the studio.

Check it out, invite your friends, and replace that extra left foot with something more useful. If you have questions, feel free to contact the studio. And of course you’re always welcome to pose your questions and comments here.

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