This is my biggest and most important takeaway from doing social dance: The social dance community is big and active and has a strong commitment to social justice, and it’s important that everyone gets to feel a part of it. It’s important that we take social dance as a cultural phenomenon that can impact our day-to-day lives. It’s necessary that people dance around us and around important and relevant questions. Our community should be inclusive for all. Social dance is not “cool” for everyone, and it’s important we have a clear understanding of who is involved in who.
My personal story for why I want to try to teach social dance:
I was really into my jazz classes when I was younger, but my mother always warned me about the risks of becoming a “social dancer.” I didn’t even want to take lessons for a year when I was 12, but when I got back into dancing for myself (which was a few years later), I knew that it’s important to know the risks and learn the skills in order to avoid becoming a “social dance martyr” like a lot of other people before me.
The dance community is a very active one, and there are so many members of the arts community who have been deeply involved in social justice that have come and gone. A lot of the more social dance-oriented students from my classes, my classes, have gone on to have fulfilling careers in the arts world. My personal goal is to ensure that people aren’t afraid to explore this art form again and again, no matter what path it takes.
Why are you trying to do social dance?
With a passion to explore and teach social dance, it gave me a deep appreciation for why social dance is important to learn and create within a social milieu. I also see it as an interesting way to connect with a community beyond my own home. For some reason, when I got into social dance I felt like I was going into this profession to contribute to a large community, which has always been the most important thing for me.
The art of social dancing, in general, is not so common and the most important thing for me is connecting to that community. This is important to me.
Do people ask you to dance?
Yeah. I’ve never been on a dance floor at a dance club, but when I get invited by students to dance, sometimes I do get invited. My experience has always been that my social dancing students usually ask to dance
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