As we welcome the month of June we also welcome summer! Summer is a season of sun, family activities and showing off your swimsuit body! We here at SNS are happy to help you and your family get ready for summer! Whether it be fun and healthy kid's classes for your children or our fabulous fitness dance classes for you, we've got you covered!
In our June issue you'll read tips and tricks from the Salsa N' Seattle team to support you during your dance and fitness journey. You'll also meet a fellow Salsa N' Seattle student - Derek Leung, learn more about one of our Zumba instructors - Stan Kubica as well as find out about new services, upcoming events and studio holiday closures. We wish you the very best on your wellness journey, and remember we're happy to help!
Student of the Month:
How long have you been dancing?
I have been dancing at Salsa N' Seattle Dance Studio for four years and I love it!
Why did you decide to start taking dance classes?
I was used to the busy life in Hong Kong and missed belonging to a community. I had never danced in my life and started going to Chinatown to learn ballroom and international styles. I went to a lot of studios and when I tried Salsa N' Seattle it was love at first sight! The community at SNS is family like, everyone knows everyone and is friendly.
What one or two instructors or classes would you recommend to others?
I would recommend taking Kizomba classes with Mario and Genia. Their class is always fun, energetic and you learn lots of moves. I would also recommend taking classes with Victor and Julia. Their classes are fun and very "show like" similar to Donny and Maria or Sonny and Cher. Victor and Julia are so experienced; they could do salsa in their sleep! In their classes they are patient and helpful they can always spot when you do something incorrectly. Victor is always entertaining, never gets upset. Julia is always smiling, happy and so skilled with her body movements. What has kept you coming back? I love the community here at Salsa N' Seattle; it feels like going home. During practica all of the girls will dance with you, there are no rejections. Not like at some places where they think they are too advanced and only dance with certain people. I also like that SNS socials do not feel like a dating place, dancing is the reason everyone comes.
When you are not dancing, what do you enjoy doing?
I show houses, spend time with my spouse, go out and enjoy music and people. I use to go swimming at the YMCA, but haven't been going lately. "It's been a pleasure watching Derek advance so much in his salsa and bachata dancing. Derek's passion and commitment to dance are apparent and its great to see him take on other forms of dancing like Kizomba. Derek is always positive and smiling and is a lot of fun to dance with!!!!"~ Julia Krasnov (Studio Director)
Read tips and tricks from our experienced instructors
Salsa tips from Edir:
Dance with everyone. Yes just like it sounds, never say no to a dance (granted, if they are respectful with you). It is important to dance with dancers of all different levels. People ask: ‘If I dance only with better dancers than me, will I get better faster?’ It’s quite the opposite indeed, you learn the most, and more deeply understand the why of the movement when you dance with someone that has less experience. You need to highlight the role you have as a dancer. If you’re a leader you really have to lead for your follow to do what you want. If you’re a follow then you just need to sink in and follow, even if it’s just basic steps. You can work on your styling, or concentrate on your body movement.
‘Then, should I only dance with people that have lower level?’ No. You will be able to imitate the expression, and presence with a more advanced dancer. They will make the most of their dance with you… and NO you’re not boring them! Plus you get to practice many things that you probably can’t do with a dancer your level or lower.
But… ‘Asking more advanced dancers to dance is intimidating!’ I guess it is, because you make it so. Remember this: They’re probably better because they’ve done this for longer than you, or worked harder. Also, they once were beginners, just like everyone else.
‘I’m a woman, women don’t ask guys out to dance!!!’ Newsflash! It’s 2016 of course women can ask men! Actually, let me tell you a secret: We kinda dig it! So there, Ask away dance with everyone! See you on the dance floor!
Eric shares some Hip Hop tricks:
The best thing you can bring to a dance class is an open-mind and positive energy! I've found that the classes have stuck with me the most are the ones where I went in willing to learn and surrounded by amazing people who all bounced off good vibes with each other. Those are the classes that leave you inspired and ready to tackle the world :)
In terms of improving, here are some things I recommend to students:
Take lots of workshops. Improve your dance vocabulary, watch how others dance, and use the mirror as much as you can.
Practice at home. This is the only way to make sure things you are learning in class stick with you.
Don't get discouraged. A lot of dance comes with experience, so trust in yourself that you are constantly improving.
Movement texture. This is how your body moves rather than where. The where creates pictures, and the how shows interpretation.
Timing. Once you have some level of comfort moving around and understanding your body, really focus on the music and the timing. Actively listen to the music.
Drills. Now that you have some fundamentals, make sure you sit down and really drill on them. Basic but perfect execution always says more about a dancer than fancy tricks without solid fundamentals
Go out of your comfort zone. I find that once students are proficient in one style, they tend to take classes that they know they will do well. This is a mistake. Go and learn things you don't know!
Concepts. When learning in class, don't just passively learn what is in front of you. Break down the concepts so that you can twist and switch them up yourself.
Teach. Teaching something forces you to understand that material better! This is the best way to progress when you your growth stagnating.
But most importantly, make sure you take a step back at times and realize that dancing is fun, and you're doing it for yourself! If you have any questions please feel free to approach me after class.
Genia talks Kizomba:
Dance with intuition instead of steps.
To my leads: Owning your dance is the most amazing and hardest thing you'll have to do, and while supporting another. That job will be made doubly hard by the art of counting your steps. Counting gives you a sense of where to be and when to get there, but you have to get rid of it in order to "Dance". So be Daring, get rid of the counts as soon as you understand the mechanics of the pattern. Challenge yourself by applying the patterns you know to as many styles of Kizomba music as possible. Figure out what works and what needs to be tweaked. Remember: Kizomba is a circular dance. You'll get more variety with less patterns moving in circles. You might even discover a new pattern. So practice Owning your Dance.
To my fellow follows: I would encourage you to never "waste a dance". We all love those amazing dances where the lead "made" you do things you never thought you could. That said, I would caution you to not discount new leads, for they have their own magic. New leads will give you time to practice your footwork, your posture and balance, and time develop your style. My advice is to enjoy all your dances (safely) no matter the leads' skill level, as they will all contribute to your own growth as a Kizomba dancer. Our job is to put the Cherry on Top, so go ahead leave your lead breathless.
Instructor of the Month: Stan Kubica
What types of dance do you currently do, or have you studied in the past?
I worked with a performing arts school as the Co-Dance Coordinator. We had a Ballet Teacher as well as a modern dance teacher come in ad teach us at least once or twice a week. I taught Hip Hop. I loved taking the Ballet and Modern. It was so good to move my body in those ways!!! I miss taking those classes!!! Currently I teach Zumba which is a melding of Latin dance and fitness. It also includes some other styles like Hip-hop, Bollywood, Swing and others. Recently I started going to Alexis' Hip Hop 1 class and I am LOVING it!!!!
What do you consider to be your greatest dance-related accomplishment?
Hmmm, Well, one of my greatest accomplishments is seeing my students be successful! To see them break through their fears and start to dance freely. That makes me happy. I also helped write and create a Broadway style show called No More Victims. It is an anti-bullying program that tours High Schools of the United States talking to kids about how they should treat each other and how to make a difference in their schools!
What classes do you teach at SNS?
I teach Zumba on Monday's at 5PM and Thursday's at 6:30PM.
What is unique about your dancing and/or the way you teach?
I guess what makes my dancing unique is me! We all have our own style... Kind of like a fingerprint. As far as the way I teach, I just try to make everyone feel comfortable in my class. If people can feel comfortable then they can accomplish more.
What is your favorite part about teaching at SNS?
I love seeing my students in my classes! the regulars always make my day!!! I also love the opportunity to dance and learn the other styles of dance that are taught at SNS!
Do you have any tips you'd like to share for new students?
I think this goes for ANY classes that someone might take. Go in and just be free! Don't worry about anyone else around you! Give yourself the freedom to makes mistakes. You won't learn the choreography or anything for that matter in one class. It's ok! Just keep going!!!! You don't have to be perfect! Especially in Zumba, as long as you are moving then you are working your body and burning calories!!!
When you’re not teaching, what else do you enjoy doing?
I am an artist. I have drawn some comic books for a couple of friends. I am in the process of finishing up illustrating a children's book for a friend. I am a singer. I have been in some local theatre productions back home in NY. I love watching Bravo!
"Students absolutely love Stan! Stan brings an incredible energy to his classes and make them so much fun. His positive and uplifting attitude and great smile are contagious. It's an absolute pleasure to have Stan on our team!"
~ Julia Krasnov (Studio Director)
Rent Our Studio For Your Next Event!
Did you know you can rent our studio for our next event? Whether it be dance practice or a party we've got everything you need! Bartenders, DJs, and more! Email us for more information.
Salsa N' Seattle Now Offers Kid's Dance Birthday Parties!
Want a fun and engaging party for your little one's birthday? We offer a two hour package that includes an hour dance lesson to make any little one's birthday party extra special! Email us for more information.
Earn points for doing what you love!
Did you know that Salsa N' Seattle has teamed up with Perkville to offer our students rewards? It's simple, sign up with the same email we have on file and earn points for attending classes, referring friends, and much more! Use your points towards free dance shoes, free private lessons and so much more! Click here to learn more and sign up!
Victor's Birthday Bash! June 3rd 10:00pm-2:00am Join your favorite dance community in helping to celebrate Victor's birthday! We will have social dancing, DJ, appetizers, cake, birthday dance and bar for 21+ More info...
Salsa N' Seattle's Five Year Anniversary Party!
June 24th 9:30pm-2:00am Join Salsa N' Seattle in celebrating our 5th year! We will have social dancing, performances from Salsa N' Seattle teams, raffle with prizes, DJ, and bar for 21+ More info...
Studio Closed for 4th of July Weekend (Friday 7/1 - Monday 7/4)