Sam and Jordan (on the picture) are our new Oxford University Salsa Society Cuban Salsa Rueda teachers 2018/2019. Would you like to know a bit more about our new teachers? We asked Sam a few questions to get to know him better. Here are his answers:
How long have you been dancing?
I first learnt to dance competitive Ballroom and Latin in October of 2013. The following January one of the ballroom dancers recommended I try Cuban Salsa and Rueda and I haven’t stopped since.
Why did you decide to start dancing?
I was walking through Iffley Sports Centre and stopped to watch some of the amazing dancers from the Oxford University Dancesport Team practicing. I wasn’t sure if I’d ever get to their level, but I knew I wanted to try.
What do you like the most about dancing?
My favourite thing about social partner dances like salsa is the connection formed between leader and follower. Salsa gives both dancers such a great opportunity to share the awesome moves they’ve learnt, to surprise them, to make them laugh, and, yes, maybe to show off a little.
How long have you been teaching?
I began helping out as a demonstrator about six months after I started learning salsa. I then set up my own classes in 2016, creating the Oxford Cuban Salsa and Rueda group.
Why did you decide to start teaching?
I’ve always really enjoyed sharing what I know with people, whether that be dancing or anything else. Demonstrating also allowed me to dance more and meet lots of new people while sticking to a student budget.
What do you like most about teaching?
It’s incredibly satisfying to see students grow and improve with your guidance, picking things up and moulding them to create their own style. Teaching has also really helped me understand and improve my own dancing, as well as allowing me to meet and make friends with so many fantastic people.
What is your favourite song?
‘Vivir Mi Vida – Marc Anthony’ is one of the best, and also most frantic, Rueda tracks, and definitely my favourite to call.
What’s the funniest thing that has ever happened to you that’s related to dancing?
Pretty much every Rueda that involves Jordan devolves into hilarious silliness. It’s very difficult not to laugh and smile with such funny, silly people in the wheel.
What is the most memorable place you have danced at?
St Columba’s Church will always feel like home to me, even more so than a lot of the places I’ve actually lived.
What are your other hobbies apart from dancing?
I’m currently training to be a kayaking coach and have recently started learning Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.