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The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

The Student News Site of Tarrant County College

The Collegian

Aspiring dancers learn the fine points of salsa

October 9, 2019 | Gunner Young | campus editor
Photos By Joseph Serrata/The Collegian. Fort Worth Arthur Murray Dance Studio instructor Emily Miliani demonstrates the basics of salsa with TR students as a part of “Noche de Salsa” Oct. 3 on TR Campus.
Photos By Joseph Serrata/The Collegian. Fort Worth Arthur Murray Dance Studio instructor Emily Miliani demonstrates the basics of salsa with TR students as a part of “Noche de Salsa” Oct. 3 on TR Campus.

As a part of Hispanic Heritage Month, TR student activities hosted a free Latin dance lesson while providing food and refreshments at the Main Street Plaza on Oct. 3.

“Noche de Salsa,” or “Salsa Night,” was a salsa class taught by two dance instructors, Emily Miliani and Jacob Jordans from Arthur Murray Dance Studio in Fort Worth.

The objective of the lesson was not only to teach students how to salsa dance, but also to show what goes on at Arthur Murray Dance Studio and to give some insight on Hispanic culture, Jordans said.

“It’s a very, very big part of Hispanic heritage to be able to dance,” Jordans said. “It’s not just about dancing together. It’s about the sociality of it and how a community comes together.”

Students were assigned partners and instructed to face them as they were taught the dance moves step by step. Every few minutes, everyone turned to a new partner.

Dance instructor Jacob Jordans practices the footwork required to salsa dance with a TR student.
Dance instructor Jacob Jordans practices the footwork required to salsa dance with a TR student.

A large table was set up with Hispanic-themed food, and those who instead chose to watch sat at tables with plates full of food.

Dancing is deeply embedded in different cultures, Miliani said.

“When we are able to share these different dances, it allows us to connect even more to the culture itself and allows us to experience it in a different way,” Miliani said.

Learning to dance is not only about learning to express oneself but also connecting with other people, she said.

“It’s something you just can’t find in another venue,” Miliani said.

TR student and dancer David Stevens said his family’s encouragement to embrace Hispanic culture led to his love of dancing and Latin music.

“I always wanted to learn the Latin dances,” Stevens said. “I learned today that I can do it, and it’s not as hard as I thought it was.”

The lesson ended with the participants getting a chance to get a bite to eat and watch a complex dance routine by Jordans and Miliani that displayed the full potential of salsa dancing. They stayed after and answered questions and chatted with students.

“I got a lot of smiles and stuff today,” Jordans said. “That’s why I do this, to make people happy.”

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