FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
We offer an Introductory Special which includes a 45-min. private lesson and personal evaluation, a consultation with our dance advisor, a single group class, and a dance party. This will allow you to sample our group class and private instruction experience, in addition to our studio ambience, at low cost and with no obligation. Taking advantage of this special offer means that our instructors and our dance advisor can listen to your goals and recommend the appropriate level of dance for you. The class schedule can be confusing for first time students, so let us describe the options that are available to you.
Do I have to have a partner?
No, you don't need a partner to take dance lessons. In our group classes, we teach lead and follow basic steps, technique, and patterns, and to rotate partners throughout the class. In this way, you learn to dance with different kinds of partners and you get to meet new people. In private lessons, if you do not have a partner you will typically dance with your instructor.
What should I wear? Do I need special shoes?
Wear clothes in which you feel comfortable moving. Street shoes are fine in the beginning, but we recommend leather-soled shoes that cover the entire foot. Rubber soled shoes may stick to the floor and sandals and sling-backs may not give you the support you need for dancing. As you progress, you will likely want to purchase dance shoes. These are specialized shoes designed for dancing, with heels for better balance, suede soles for easy movement on hardwood floors, and designs that keep
your shoes tightly on your feet while dancing.
$30 Workshop (in advance) $40 at the door.
The ideal is a mixture of both. Group classes teach you step patterns, vocabulary, and basic technique, and allow you to hone leading and following skills by working with different partners. Private lessons provide the most personalized instruction and allow you to progress at your own pace. In a private lesson, you may also dance with your instructor, who is trained to help you improve your partnership skills. Depending on your budget, goals, and learning style, we give you the freedom to determine what mix of lessons works best for you.
Yes! Anyone can learn to dance. Our instructors work with beginners all the time. They can explain and demonstrate dances in a way that makes it easy for people with no prior dance training to understand. They will also help you hear the rhythm in the music. If you can move, you can dance!
Why should I choose this dance studio?
Some dance studios hire individuals who have little or no prior ballroom dance experience and provide them with only a few months training before they become instructors. It can be difficult for beginner students to recognize the quality of their dance instruction. Our studio has the most expert instructors with many years of professional ballroom dance and teaching experience, assuring only the highest quality level of instruction.
The music that you enjoy listening to will usually help you determine the kind of dances you will like most. Enjoy big band swing? Then you will most likely enjoy dancing East Coast Swing and Lindy Hop. Blues or contemporary R&B? Try West Coast Swing. Frank Sinatra? Foxtrot. For some styles, like Argentine Tango, the music is less familiar. We recommend you keep an open mind: it may turn out that you enjoy dancing to music you have never heard before. For more information about the different dance styles, please see the Ballroom Dance Styles page.
As for how many dances you should start learning at once, it will vary by person. Many people start by sampling multiple dance styles to find out which ones they like best. Others stick their toes in the water by starting out with only one or two dances and add more later as they become more proficient. Your dance instructor will help you design a dance program that matches your interests.
How long will it take me to learn to dance?
You can go out dancing right after your very first lesson, and we encourage this. The more you practice the better you will become! That said, depending on your goals it usually takes a few months to feel truly comfortable and confident on the dance floor. We encourage you to practice as much as possible — go out and have fun! To help you progress, we provide weekly practice sessions, in which you can take your first dance steps out on the floor in a supportive environment.
When can I move up from one level to another?
A strong foundation is key to your development and progress as a dancer. Before graduating to a new level, you should be secure in the entire syllabus of material for your current level. You may always check with your instructor at the end of a course cycle for a personal evaluation.
I have other dance training. What level should I start with?
Prior dance training is generally an advantage in that you will have good body awareness and experience in learning steps quickly. However, ballroom dancing is quite different from other types of dancing, and learning to connect properly to a partner is ultimately more important than memorizing steps. In addition, technique in ballroom dancing can be different than in solo dancing – hip movement in Latin dances, for example, involves different body mechanics than hip movement in jazz dancing. For these reasons, we often recommend that even dancers who are highly trained in other disciplines start with a Beginner level class. You may progress more quickly than students with no prior dance training, but it is important for you to establish a good foundation.
What is the age range of your students?
Our students range from the young to the young at heart — from their teens to 70+.
Where can I find a partner?
You can take dance lessons without a partner, but attending socials and practices is a good way to meet people and you may meet some people with whom you enjoy dancing on a more regular basis. You may also let your instructors and fellow students know that you are looking for a partner.
How much will it cost?
Ultimately, the cost depends on your own budget and goals as their are numerous options available to you. Many people enjoy studying dance as part of a lifelong learning program. Others find that they enjoy competition, and continually work to improve their dancing through lessons and practices. And still others are content to learn just enough to be able to go out and socialize, with occasional refresher courses. We welcome everyone!
Do you offer discounts for children and teens?
“Student discounts” are provided to college age and younger students; student ID and registration card for the current semester is required.