812 Dance Teachers


Katia and Fred talk about how they became dance teachers and the dance they teach.

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Todd: So, Fred and Katia, we're talking about your dance school. Can you talk a little about your dance background? How did you learn how to dance?

Fred: Well, for myself, I can say that being Canadian, it's not in my blood or anything... to know how to dance.

Todd: The Canadian salsa.

Fred: The Canadian salsa. Right. If such a thing would exist. That would be great. But in fact, yeah, for me it was quite a challenge because I didn't know so much about salsa when I first started dancing when I was maybe 14 years old, where I got interested, and so I started to take some lessons in Canada and then I started dancing a bit and then I decided to do an exchange program in Spain for two years, where of course, in a latin country people dance more, those kind of dances, so I could take some lessons from a professional Argentinian tango teacher which taught me a lot about listening to the music, the rhythm and everything like that, so I really got into it so since then, since I'm 14 years old, so it's been close to 8, 9 years now that I've been dancing South American dances.

Todd: That's a pretty good background.

Katia: It's very good, and you can tell right away. You put on the music, the latin music on and there goes Fred dancing.

Fred: I just can't stop myself. I really enjoy it. It's fun.

Todd: The pride of Canada.... Katia, how about yourself?

Katia: OK, my background. Well, I'm half Mexican, half Russian so I do have the latin blood and European or Russian blood, and I started dancing when I was very young. My mother was a ballet teacher, so that's where I took it from.

Todd: So you started out in the ballet?

Katia: Yes, classical ballet. Classical ballet, that was my first type of dance, and after that, of course, I mostly grew up in Mexico, so there was a lot of salsa and merengue always around so I grew up with both classical ballet and latin dance and then of course I started to learning a little bit more about different dances. I like belly dance and also ballroom dance, or sports dance, which includes cha-cha, and waltz, and fox-trot, a little bit of tango, which I was not very successful, unfortunately, at least yet.

Todd: You can't be successful at everything, so.

Katia: Why not? No, but after I've been teaching for many years, since I was 17 years old, I was teaching in Mexico and then I moved to the United States. I was also teaching there, classical ballet, and now here. I also held a few dancing jobs. I worked in a circus, dancing.

Todd: Get out of here. You worked in a circus?

Katia: I worked in a circus, and I also worked in Las Vegas with... as a back.. in the back of the stage. There's an impersonator, for example Janet Jackson or Micheal Jackson, or Elvis Presley, and I was one of the back dancers.

Todd: Wow, you guys are the perfect team.

Katia: We... I think, we are the perfect team.

Fred: Yeah, I think, we are a pretty good match but I really do think that Katia is a great teacher as well as being a good dancer.

Katia: But, I do believe that many of our female dancers, when they come to salsa, they see Fred and they really feel motivated to see somebody that is not Latin and being able to dance how he does, so I think Fred inspires a lot of people.

Todd: So, yeah, for anybody out there that are interested, this school is in Beppu which is in Kyuushuu Japan and I wish you the best of luck.

Fred: Thank you so much.

Katia: Thank you.

Learn Vocabulary from the lesson

it's not in my blood or anything

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It's not in my blood or anything to know how to dance.

Something that is 'in our blood' comes naturally.  Notice the following:

  1. Music is not in her blood.
  2. Teaching is in his blood.

If such a thing would exist

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The Canadian salsa, if such a thing would exist.

We use the phrase 'If such a thing would exist' to talk about something that is not real.  Notice the following:

  1. A world of 100% renewable energy, If such a thing would exist, is the answer.
  2. If such a thing would exist, I'd buy it.

a pretty good background

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Fred has a pretty good background.

'Background' is someone's education and work experience.  Notice the following:

  1. He has a pretty good background in accounting.
  2. I have a pretty good background in history, but not math or science.

I just can't stop myself

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I just can't stop myself. It's fun.

When we can't control our actions or behavior, we say 'I just can't stop myself'.We often use this phrase when we're having a lot of fun.  Notice the following:

  1. When I go to Karaoke, I just can't stop myself.
  2. Once I start dancing , I just can't stop myself.

Get out of here

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Get out of here. You worked in a circus?

We use the phrase 'get out of here' when someone tells us something we can't believe. Americans say it a lot. It's very informal.  Notice the following:

  1. No way! Get out of here!
  2. You were born in Brazil? Really? Get out of here!
Answer the following questions about the interview.

Keep Listening

Below are some more great lessons!

Vocabulary Challenge

Complete the sentences with the words below.
in my blood • such a thing • background
stop myself • get out
  1. She's 50 years old?  of here!
  2. Painting has always just been .
  3. She has a in English Literature, but she works in an accounting office.
  4. Why would you believe ?
  5. I just can't around chocolate.