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Swing and Salsa time at dance workshops

By Deb Aspen
Special to The PREVIEW

April is Swing and Salsa time for local dancers, as In Step Dance Club is hosting yet another fun-filled day of dance instruction, dinner and dancing.

Mark your calendars for Saturday, April 13, for the “Country Swing & Salsa Workshops,” at the PLPOA Clubhouse, 230A Port Ave.   Both dance workshops will be taught at the same time by world-renowned Arthur Murray Ballroom Champions Bob and Cindy Long from Albuquerque, N.M.

By popular vote, we have asked this incredibly talented duo to teach Beginning Salsa and Intermediate Country Western Swing this time.  In the past, the Longs have shared their expertise in a variety of dances, including such favorites as Foxtrot, Waltz, Cha Cha, Rumba, West Coast Swing, Bolero, Samba and Argentine Tango.  They have also introduced us to a few less widely known dances such as Viennese Waltz, Quickstep, Hustle, and Bossa Nova.

As the phrase “Country Swing” may represent differing styles to different folks, some of you might be wondering what kind of swing are we talking about?  Get ready for Arthur Murray-style Country Western Swing, which is a really easy-to-learn 1, 2, 3, 4 sequence.  Nothing fancy:  no triple-steps, no syncopations; just simple footwork so we can start twirling the girl, and looking good doing it!  As stated earlier, this will be an intermediate class, so unless you know the basics, you’ll be outgunned pardner.

No sweat, though, as it turns out, Deb Aspen will be teaching beginning Country Western Swing at On The Rocks (formally Pagosa Pubworks) on Thursday nights March 21, April 4 and April 11 at 7 p.m.  She is offering a half-hour class free of charge in order to prepare those of you who wish to attend the Longs’ workshop next month.  Following this introductory CW Swing class, there will be an hour and a half of all types of CW dancing to a wide variety of country CD music.

This will kick off a regular schedule of dancing on Thursday nights, with Latin Night in the horizon.  Salsa will be on the dance “menu” for the first go-round on Thursday nights starting April 25 and continuing into May.  The plan is to offer follow-up classes from Bob and Cindy’s Salsa workshop.  The same half-hour class followed by open Latin dancing to all types of Latin music will apply after the workshop. Check The PREVIEW for details.

So, why Salsa for the other dance genre at the workshop?  Well, believe it or not, it placed first in a recent survey sent out to In Step Dance members.  This dance is so popular in other towns and cities, and there is a small contingency of Salsa dancers in our area that would like to have a venue in which to practice their moves.

Registration for one or the other of the Longs’ workshops on April 13 begins at 2:45 p.m.  Classes will run from 3-6 p.m., with a half-hour refreshment break midway (provided by In Step Dance).  There will be a break from 6-6:30 for everyone to change into dressier attire for party mode if they wish, and a full kitchen is available for any last-minute food preparation you might have.  We will enjoy BYOB cocktails and appetizers from 6:30-7 with a potluck dinner following.  DJ Dusty will play our favorites from 7:30-10:30, and some entertainment in the form of dance exhibitions is slated throughout the evening, as well as some exciting door prizes.

You do not need a partner to attend, and the cost is $25 per person.  All proceeds go to the visiting clinicians and to put on the event.  Any leftover funds will go into a Dance Scholarship Certificate that will be awarded to a lucky winner during the gift drawing later that evening.  If you attend a workshop, the dance is free.  If you do not attend, the cost for the evening’s events is $5 per person.  This will help pay for the DJ.

Contact Deb at 731-3338 for more information.

This story was posted on March 28, 2013.