Seemingly, in the blink of an eye, 2017 is coming to a close. For me, it’s hard to believe how quickly my second year as the lead of Salsaholics passed. So many new patterns. So many new students (for which I am incredibly grateful). So many installments of Mark’s Lead, the place in which I muse and reflect on the relationships among joyful dance, learning dance, and dance – specifically salsa in most cases – as a metaphor for life.
Certainly, Salsaholics would not have been as successful as it has been without the great team of Salsa Dealers who have supported not only me, but most importantly, our students as well. A big acknowledgement and appreciation to those who were with us through the past year and into the next: Jasmine, Farook, Faith, Alma, Steven, Safura, Marigrace; and to those who are on to other endeavours: Cheryl, Liliya, and Veronica.
It’s been wonderful to watch as new students join the class, at first unsure about where to put their feet and challenged by a simple turn, gaining skill and confidence, and now finding themselves on a social dance floor, if not completely at ease, then at least able to lead or follow at a level that enables them to enjoy an evening (or afternoon) of dance. And that’s really what it’s all about: Being one of those people who show up at an event or party, hear some music that has a familiar count and rhythm pattern, invite a partner, and impress the heck out of everyone else there, even with a few simple, well-executed steps and combinations. It’s evident from almost any bar, club, corporate function, or social—most people don’t know how to dance, and YOU DO!
It truly continues to be an honour and a privilege to have the opportunity to enable people to do that—have the competence and confidence to enjoy themselves with a partner to great music. Thank you to the Salsaholics students, to the Salsaholics Salsa Dealers, to everyone who come out to this year’s 12th season of Sidewalk Salsa (and to my partner in that particular crime, Ravi Lall), to Sunny Devine for creating this marvellous organization and inspiring the team, to the great people at Trinity St. Paul’s Centre for making their home our home. Here’s to what was a great 2017, and here’s to what we hope will be another wonderful year of Thursday evening Salsaholics Anonymous in 2018.
See you next year, on the dance floor.