The Art of Salsa

My passion for dance has been with me since I discovered it as a teen. We formed a dance group back in my high school days while studying at the Kenya High School in Nairobi. 4 girls who could break it down and loved christian hip-hop music. There was a huge hip-hop influence at the time. Valary, Faith, Carol and I would dance during challenge weekends in our school Chapel.

After high school i joined a youth dance group called DITTO; an acronym for Disciples in True Trinity Order. We believed (and still do) that we could share our faith through the talent given us by our heavenly Father. This begun my foray into serious dancing as our group leader, spiritual mentor and friend drove us to attain our limits and surpass them.

I was introduced to salsa in DITTO. My brother, Mike, was into salsa as well and attended weekly classes. My sister Jacky was also quite the dancer. It only followed that through these 2 I would get the chance to go for my first purely salsa lesson and social dance. Thanx guys :), you started this.

Dance comes naturally to me and thus I got away with not attending regular salsa classes for quite a few years. From Maranga, Benji to Dan who took the time to practice with me and kept me in the know of the latest moves. But without regular work I was stagnant and my technique…wait, what technique?-Exactly. I needed work. I met JP. He organized an open practice session 3 times a week that was free for all at YWCA in Buruburu, Nairobi. Since this was quite close to home I found myself there twice a week working on my turns and my follow.

Now in Germany, the salsa scene is a place I call home. From Freiberg (my university town), to Dresden, to Berlin. I thank God for salsa, the salsa family and the international language that is dance. Albeit every time people hear I come from Kenya they are shocked that there is such a lively latin dance scene there. Yes, there is and I am the testament that there are much more dancers like me and even better.

Now wizened in these matters of dance, as well as encouraged by Valentino, I realize I’ve reached a plateau. That to get further I need to take lessons. I’m looking forward to that now. To attaining a different level of expressing myself through dance, learning to better connect my hip-hop background with my Latin and finally really getting down to learning bachata (it still eludes me).

One thing I always say, whether you know how to dance or not:

Dont just stand there, dance! It burns more calories!

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