So I thought I could dance... and I can. / by Granville Street

Bar none, one of the best things about Granville Street is that its bustling at any hour. You can wind down on a sunny patio, people-watching the time away or shopping for the shmexiest pair of shoes for a night of debauchery along the drag. Plenty of venues to choose from, all in close proximity of each other.

My Wednesday nights, however, are locked for my weekly dance diva indulgence. Like millions of others, I can't get enough of reality dance shows such as, So You Think You Can Dance and Dancing with the Stars. I decided in October 2007 that I would give Salsa a chance... and I'm glad I did.

Urban Beat Dance Co. caters to the Average Joes or Janes, such as myself, yearning to dance like a Pussy Cat Doll, or swing like Benji Schwimmer. No-partner is required. An average class has approximately 40 leads and follows (men and women) where the follows (ladies), rotate after every few minutes. I started off with eight weeks of very gentle beginner classes, then moved up the ranks to the advanced group.

Here is a video of my Wednesday Salsa Dips and Tricks class taught by the impossibly stylish Roger Chen. In this clip, Roger is reviewing the three new dips we've learned that day with partner, Scarlet.

Seriously, you can do this! The next round of classes starts this week (July 9). See you there!

Hilarious Dance Lingo (as seen from

  • DANCE OBJECT: any dancer who will put out for you and satisfy you regularly - in dance, that is. If you and it commonly arrive and leave together, they're called a dance 'wife' or a dance 'husband'. After a dance divorce, they're called ex's. Often, they last longer than real husbands and are much more enthusiastic than real wives.

  • GIVING GOOD HAIR: any follower who uses her hair to hit breaks in the music by simulating a Harlequin Heroine in a moment of passion. This, in turn, sometimes causes dance chubbys.

  • THE DICTATOR: a leader who doesn't lead but commands. Rather than his leads suggesting, "Please do a whip", they instead command, "Ve vill do zee whip NOW!"

Note: More Urban Beat Video Clips for the curious.... Pam Podmoroff is also one of my teachers and she's just the sweetest thing. Graeme, my third teacher is also known as the King of West Coast Swing... with due cause. Check this demo of them dancing together.

P/S I can do 90% of all that too (albiet with less flair) but its only been 8 months! Don't wait if social dancing excites you. This place sets you up to succeed. There is no embarassment.