Dancing Shoes

Every Thursday evening, Berry College’s Swing and Ballroom Association holds free two-hour dance lessons taught by students and occasionally guest instructors. The lessons focus on two different dances. The first is a style of swing dance while the second is either a Latin or ballroom routine. 

Visitors learn simple footwork, as well as more complicated routines, such as the Spiral Waltz. For non-dancers, it is surprisingly easy to pick up with the instruction of junior Tori Thiessen and senior Carter Griffin. 

“I love Swing and Ballroom because, when I first started going, I didn’t know how to dance. I knew nothing. But I was able to learn in a fun, social, loving environment,” said Thiessen, one of Swing and Ballroom’s co-presidents. “I fell in love with it.”

Some of the attendees’ favorite dances include the East Coast Swing, Merengue, Lindy Hop, Waltz, and Salsa. The more energetic the dances are, the better they are received. 

However, Swing and Ballroom does more than teach weekly dance lessons. They also put on dance events throughout the school year. This spring, the club is holding its second annual Jester’s Ball on April 1 and April 2 which is open to the public. The ball will be in the Morgan Residence Hall Jewel Box from 8-11 p.m. Friday and 8-12 p.m. Saturday, which will be dedicated to a workshop taught by professional instructors. 

The event features live jazz bands, as well as two nights of professionally instructed dance lessons and great food.

Swing and Ballroom promises an evening of fun regardless of your skill level. The club is not just about learning how to dance or pretending you have rhythm. It provides a sense of community with a beat.

Written by Student Public Relations Assistant Abbie Smith. Photos by student photographers Sydney Romer and Shannon Bostic.