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Culture Shock: Make it hot

Valley dance class spices up the end of the weekend

 by Tiffany Tcheng
 published on Thursday, November 17, 2005


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Classical music and formal wear are two things you won't find at the Paragon Dance Center on Sunday evenings. Instead, people of all ages are learning the salsa, a dance in which partners move to dynamic rhythms and vibrant, fast-paced beats while locking eyes with one another.

The Paragon Dance Center hosts "Salsa Sundays," featuring a one-hour salsa lesson and two hours of open salsa dancing.

Salsa Sundays features a street style twist on traditional salsa dancing, according to Jeff Greenspan, an employee of the center.

"It's good to have both street and ballroom styles to get a well-rounded salsa education," says Greenspan.

Instructor Brandy Richey, 25, has been dancing for 10 years and teaching for eight. Richey says her interest in salsa dancing was sparked by watching the movie "Dirty Dancing." She describes salsa dancing as an expression of one's self.

"I make the analogy to salsa at different restaurants," Richey says. "They're all Mexican restaurants and they all have salsa, but the salsas are all different."

Rudy Rodriguez, a newcomer at the studio, came with his friend to the dance center. He says he tried salsa dancing once before and hopes to do it again.

"It's a really intimate dance, and the music is fun," Rodriguez says. "It looks so wonderful to see couples dance it. I want to be able to dance it and have a great time."

Reach the reporter at tiffany.tcheng@asu.edu.



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