Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Saturday Social Part I

This past Saturday Capitan and I had a full social schedule! First, we ventured out to Dance Connection for their Salsa Party. This is the same studio that Capitan and I worked on Rueda all those months ago. I'm pleased to say that I've been able to keep in touch with Alex (the primary instructor/owner) over the months and I was very excited to finally be able to make it to one of the parties.

What I love about this studio is the atmosphere. It always has a very inviting laid back homey feel, it's almost as if you've come into someone's home for a get-together and they've pushed all the furniture aside so we can dance! Capitan and I received a very warm welcome and were introduced to some of the students as they came in. Alex and crew put out a very nice snack spread of home made nachos, brought in chicken, and several gallons of lemonade along with the always available coffee and water. I noticed that some students had brought some libations of their own choosing to enjoy. It really felt like a neighborhood social event!


Shortly after the party started a couple sitting very near the edge of the dance floor got up and danced some Salsa, they looked like they were having a blast! Then, students of one of the more advanced Rueda classes got out there and danced some fantastic Rueda! What fun it would be to know some of those calls! Capitan and I hung back for most of the party, as happens when we show up as new faces to an already established group. We were happy to catch up with Alex and see what had been happening with him and the studio in our absence.

A little later in the party I was asked to dance Salsa by an older gentleman, it wasn't bad... he was a very good lead! I only had some trouble following because I'm not at all familiar with some of the purely social Salsa figures, something I will have to adapt to. Captain was asked to dance Tango by a student that was just picking up Salsa, but was more well versed in smooth, once he found out Capitan liked Tango... he felt compelled to ask her for a dance. After that Alex took his turns with us, leading Capitan in a West Coast Swing and me in a super fast Salsa! It's a major coup that we get asked to dance when it's our first time out somewhere!

Towards the end of the evening Alex had a surprise for us, one of the young dance troupes that rents his space for practice was on hand to give us a show. This group was high school age kids that put on a show of some traditional Latin dances. It was well done for such young people! After that Alex asked one of his students to help him show us a Viennese Waltz. It was beautiful and for a studio that concentrates primarily in Latin style dances a very pleasant surprise! I knew Alex had been trained in all manners of Ballroom and Latin dances but it was very nice to see it in action!

After the show, Captain and I decided to head off to our next location for the night, but I have a feeling we'll be making some more appearances at these parties. We bid Alex farewell with a promise to keep in touch.

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