Category: Dance Info, News & Trends

Weight Loss Through Dance and Diet

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We all know people who work out furiously at the gym without losing much, if any, weight. Some of them rationalize it – if I exercise, I can eat what I want. That’s what they say, even as the weight creeps on a bit at a time and rarely leaves for long. You cannot consume...

A Few Of Our Favorite Dance Movies!

When you think of movies featuring great dancers, the first name that comes to mind is Fred Astaire, founder of Fred Astaire Franchised Dance Studios. Often partnered with the gifted Ginger Rogers, Fred Astaire brought fabulous moves, smooth sophistication and romance to the big screen. And, of course, Ginger Rogers did the same – backwards,...

An In-Depth Guide: Preparing Your Body For a Dance Competition

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Fred Astaire Dance Studios across the globe host many regional and national competitions throughout the year. In order to feel fully prepared for a FADS dance competition, you want to make sure you are treating your body right for the few weeks leading up to the competition so you are able to handle the demands...

The Importance of Good Technique

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When it comes to dance, no truer words were spoken than what was said by British poet and dramatist, John Dryden in the 1600’s, “Dancing is the poetry of the foot.” Whether dancing in front of an audience or dancing down a street on a sunny afternoon, the feet write and display the graceful beauty...

How To Tell The Difference Between Popular Types Of Latin Dances

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Ballroom dance is enjoyed all over the world in a variety of forms, many having common roots. This is particularly true of the popular Latin dances. While we often think of them as South American specialties, their histories are more complicated than that. Many derive from African rhythms and patterns that were later adapted in...

Fred Astaire Dance Partners: January Birthdays

Ginger Rogers is likely the dance partner we think of first, but Fred Astaire, our co-founder and namesake, was fortunate to have performed and starred with numerous well-known & talented dancers, on both stage and screen during his career. This blog post highlights the stories of two of Astaire’s esteemed dance partners – George Burns...

What Do I Need To Know Before I Come For My First Lesson?

Congratulations! You’ve taken the first step toward learning new dance steps. You stopped by Fred Astaire Dance Studios, chatted with the manager and an instructor and decided the time is right to learn how to dance, to perk up your social life and to get in better shape (yes, dance does all of those things...

We’re Swinging Into November With Some Great Events!

This is the time of the year when the temperature drops, but the fun never stops at your Fred Astaire Dance Studio of West Hartford. We will keep you hopping! The Regional Competition in Stamford is set for Nov. 9-11 (Thursday-Saturday). Students with an interest in watching the competition can stop by the front desk...

Three Ways Dance Lessons Are Better Than A Gym Membership

Here come the holidays. And here come the parties, the snacks, the beverages, the little overindulgences that make clothing a bit too tight for comfort. Hey, we like to look good in our smart outfits. Even a couple of pounds can cause distress. We know how easy it is to add a few and how...

Eat, Drink, Dance, and Be Scary!

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We love October! The weather cools down, there are festivals and holidays and our minds begin to turn toward indoor activities and a long, cold (but not lonely at Fred Astaire Dance Studio of West Hartford) winter. We kick off the festivities on Friday, Oct. 6, with a day-long crafts fair. Stop by and take...

Do’s and Don’t of Social Dancing

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Dancing is a staple of many social activities conducted in public – weddings, social and business parties, dinner dates – and as such, is subject to the usual social conventions. Grace and charm are part of dance (and part of the fun!), and your personality is as well. Ballroom dancing can be active and passionate...

Why Should I Take Ballroom Dance Lessons?

Fred Astaire Franchised Dance Studios offer so many different forms of ballroom dance instruction, themed parties, outings and competitions that we could fill up your entire social calendar. And we are happy to do so. Still, some people hesitate. Should I take dance lessons? What’s going to be so great about it for me? The...

How Well Do You Know Ballroom Dance Trivia?

Test your knowledge and see how much you know about ballroom dance trivia, with this super-fun quiz, originally published on Discovery.com. 1. This early form of ballroom dominated the dance scene from the 17th century to the 19th century. A. Minuet B. Waltz C. Reel 2. Which 3/4 count ballroom dance style represented a transition...

Lets Get in Formation!

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The Roaring Twenties was a time of celebration and fun, with popular dances (the Charleston, the Lindy Hop), new styles (the flapper) and a mood filled with upbeat expectations. So get ready to revisit and experience the Roaring Twenties for yourself with Boris! Formation classes will be held on Tuesdays at 8:15 p.m., beginning Tuesday,...

We have Two Fabulous Parties To Help You Stay Cool This July

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Oh, the weather outside is frightful – frightfully hot. It certainly makes us long for those chilly days of winter that lead up to the holidays. Well, the end of December is quite a way off, but there’s no reason we can’t pretend it’s nearly the “most wonderful time of the year.” So we’re having...

4 Reasons Why We Love to Salsa

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It’s summer, and summer brings the heat. The same goes for one of our favorite dances – salsa. It’s hot, hot, hot. Salsa continues to grow in popularity because of its fast pace and the lively music that accompanies this Caribbean-based dance. Latin dances build to a crescendo, creating tension and release. That makes salsa a...

Start Dancing With These 4 Questions

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Have  you thought of taking dance lessons, but never actually took the plunge? Ballroom dance instruction, whether in private lessons or group classes, provides many benefits physically, mentally and emotionally. Dance is not only a wonderful social and creative outlet, but one that can provide a very satisfying workout. Before you sign up for classes,...

Kick Off Summer By Partying (and of course, Dancing) With Us All Month

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Sometimes you just feel like partying. We sure do. We think June is a great reason for a party – or a lot of them. You know us – we’ll be dancing, having a good time, meeting new dance partners and rocking out at the West Hartford studio. We know you – you’ll be right...

We’re Celebrating 70 years of Fred Astaire Dance Studios ALL Week!!

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Our company began when Mr. Fred Astaire co-founded a chain of dance studios under his name, to make sure that his dance techniques could be preserved and passed onto the public… and on March 7th, 1947, the first Fred Astaire Dance Studio opened, at 487 Park Avenue in New York City! Since then, our network...

Cinco de Mayo Star Wars Cantina Party!

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Feelin’ loco? Spice things up at our Cinco de Mayo Star Wars Cantina party! Yes, you read that right, we are combining Star Wars Day (May 4th…”may the fourth be with you.” Get it?!) with Cinco de Mayo.  Join us as we commemorate Mexican history and one of the greatest movie franchises of all time...

Stop By The How-to Festival And Learn To Salsa!

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You know us. We love to give a little something back to this vibrant community, and we love to spread the word about dancing. We get another opportunity to do those things on Saturday, March 25, at the West Hartford library from 12:15-1 p.m. Saturday is the Town of Hartford’s inaugural How-to Festival 2017. It...

Facts About Fred

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To watch Fred Astaire dance on film – even today – is to marvel at his grace, skill and athleticism. What many don’t know is the extent to which this virtuoso practiced, worked on… and worried about his craft.  Astaire’s brilliance speaks of a confident character without a care. But Fred Astaire, namesake and co-founder of...

Make the Most out of March at our Studio!

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They used to say that March comes in like a lion and goes out like a lamb. We say that March comes in dancing and goes out exactly the same way. So march right into our studio and have yourself a terrific month. We’ve got plenty going on – great classes, great parties, great social...

History of the Cha Cha

Once upon a time, it was known as the Cha-Cha-Cha. Somewhere along the way, it lost a Cha. Now it’s just the Cha Cha, but it has lost none of its appeal! This dance is characterized by three quick steps (Cha-Cha-Cha!) followed by two slower steps. With American Style Cha Cha averaging 30 beats per minute,...

Join us for a fun Studio Outing!!! 

It’s the UCONN Mens Basketball vs. SMU game! What a great evening we have planned for Saturday, February 25. To be part of it, you need to act quickly! Your Fred Astaire Dance Studio of  West Hartford will be cheering on the UConn Huskies at the XL Center Hartford and we want everyone to be apart of...

More Info on all of our Fun, February Happenings!

What a busy month at our studio. Your feet may never leave the dance floor! We’re starting the fun on Friday, Feb. 10, with our Valentine’s Day-themed Lovefest Practice Party. This will be our normal practice party from 7:30-9 p.m., but we encourage students to wear red or pink to celebrate Valentine’s Day. It’s always...

Tips For Choosing a Ballroom Dance Studio

For many, social partner dancing is a way to enjoy ourselves and get the most out of life.  It helps reduce the stresses of everyday life for a few hours and provides entertainment. Dancing is also a healthy activity to do with a loved one or a friend. Whether you’re interested in taking dance lessons...

How Dance Relieves Stress & Loneliness During the Holidays

Many of our students tell us that they think of their Fred Astaire Dance Studio as a home-away-from-home, and a family. These are people with a common interest – a love of dance – who also discovered a genuine fondness for each other, a wonderful outlet for their creativity, and a sense of accomplishment as...

Dance Your Way Through December!

We love December! The holiday spirit grabs ahold of us and makes us want to (wait for it …) dance! We want you dancing too at your Fred Astaire Dance Studio of West Hartford. We’ve got a full December of dance, instruction, parties and fun planned for you. Grab your calendar, take out your smartphone...

In Case You Forgot Why We Love To Dance…

You already know so many of the great things about dancing. How good the movement makes you feel. The joy of expressing yourself on the dance floor, using your body instead of words. The pleasure of melding music and motion. Our students will testify to the fun they have on the dance floor at Fred...

Why Do You Think You Like To Dance?

We know that ballroom dance is beneficial physically, mentally and socially. But what is it, exactly, that makes us like to dance? Beyond the tangible physical, mental and social benefits, why does the movement and the expression of dance give us such pleasure? Now, here at Fred Astaire Dance Studios, we’d probably say we like...

We Have Some Spooktacular Studio Events This Month!

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We’ve got a full month of special activities this month, from special guest instructors to a spectacular Oktoberfest part to our Team Match and Halloween party! We’re excited to present so many great opportunities all packed into four short weeks. So let us tell you about them. On Friday, Oct. 13, the fabulous  Christine Harvey...

The History of the Foxtrot

When we discuss the basics of ballroom dancing, we often fall back on two of its staple styles – the foxtrot and the waltz. Today we are going to take a closer look at the foxtrot – a smooth, progressive dance characterized by its slow step, and long, sinuous movements.  Named for its creator, vaudeville...

New Season, New Classes and Guest Coaches!

Your Fred Astaire Dance Studio of West Hartford already offers you the best in ballroom dance instruction. But we always like to make things just a little bit better and a little more interesting. So get ready for a special day of coaching on Thursday, Sept. 15, with the outstanding and talented Anastasia Abrashin. She...

Use It or Lose It: Dancing Makes You Smarter

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We at Fred Astaire Dance Studios love to share information about the benefits of dance – socializing, building confidence, learning a new pastime, getting in better shape – and so many more, including… guess what? Dancing makes you smarter! In an article called Use It or Lose It: Dancing Makes You Smarter, Richard Powers, who leads...

There’s too much fun to be had on the dance floor for anyone to say “I can’t dance.”

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“I can’t dance”. How many times have you heard this from a boyfriend, girlfriend or spouse? Sometimes by “can’t” they mean “won’t.” At Fred Astaire Franchised Dance Studios, we don’t believe that any person “can’t” dance. Let’s face it – you need to be able to get out on the dance floor at social events...

The Emotional Benefits To Dancing

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We all have a basic need for acceptance, friendships, a social circle. And one of the best ways of building this type of support system and network is through the activity of dance. At Fred Astaire Dance Studios, we work very hard to provide exactly this type of atmosphere, and offer many ways for people...

4 Stretching Tips to Avoid Injury and Help Flexibility

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We’re always happy when our students come into our Fred Astaire Dance Studio, ready and eager to take part in their favorite dance class. Today, we have a little tip for all of our students, whether long-time dancers or those just starting out: Try to arrive a few minutes early and maybe plan to stay...

Our Spring Showcase Ball is Right Around the Corner

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Excitement continues to build for the Spring Showcase Ball on Friday, June 10. There’s something for everyone – spectators included – at this terrific event in our West Hartford studio. The fun begins at 7 p.m. This showcase mixes social dancing, performances and desserts – what else can a person ask for? At 7 p.m.,...

Foot Care Tips to Keep You on Your Toes

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“Dancing Feet” is one of the best-loved songs from the famed musical, “42nd Street.” So, how are you taking care of your dancing feet – or are you, at all? Whether you like to waltz or cha-cha or cross the dance floor in a glorious tango, your feet are the principal carriers of the rest of...

The Overall Benefits of Dance

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We get it. We’ve been there. You’re stressed, a little frazzled, and you want to be in better shape. But you’re not really the type with a hobby to take your mind off daily issues, and you’re not a gym rat or interested in team sports. What to do? Hey, you’ve already found our Dance...

April Events at Fred Astaire West Hartford!

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 Clear your calendar, and then take a look at ours. Now refill your calendar with the great classes and programs we’ve got planned for the final week of April at Fred Astaire Dance Studio of West Hartford. We’ll have a coach in the studio on Tuesday, April 26 and Wednesday, April 27. Anastasia Abrashin will...

Formation Classes at Fred Astaire West Hartford!

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We’re excited to announce the beginning of Formation classes that will begin on Wednesday, April 20 at 8:15 p.m. Team dancing is a blast and we will have 18 weeks of rehearsal, with the final two sessions being double lessons (from 8:15-9:45 p.m.) Get your dancing shoes on! The team will dance a routine to...

Team Match April 1st!

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Ready for a little competition? Are you prepared to show off your best on the dance floor? Good. Because Fred Astaire Dance Studio of West Hartford’s Team Match is rapidly approaching. It will take place on Friday, April 1, from 6-9 p.m. at the studio. The teams are Clemens vs. Alexie, Boris, MC, and Jelena....

Don’t Miss Your Chance With Guest Coach Christine Harvey

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The incomparable Christine Harvey will be in our studio for an entire day of coaching on Thursday, March 24. We cannot tell you how excited we are about  having her and getting the benefit of her expertise. Born in London, Christine began dancing at an early age and has been dancing, competing, and teaching for...

Make Sure to Dance with our Guest Coaches This Month!

Fred Astaire Dance Studio of West Hartford offers and delivers the finest in group and private ballroom dance classes, but we also bring you a great variety in our professional coaching. So please join us on Wednesday, Feb. 10, when we host guest instructors Jennifer and Stanley McCalla for a day of teaching and work...

Stop By and See Us at the Connecticut Bridal Expo!

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We are excited to attend The 31st Annual Connecticut Bridal Show Expo, featuring Heidi Elnora, this Saturday and Sunday, January 9th and 10th at the Connecticut Convention Center! In a short amount of time, our qualified instructors at Fred Astaire Dance Studio of West Hartford can help you learn a few basic steps or, if you have more time,...

Fred Astaire and Hermes Pan: A Collaboration That Changed 20th Century Dance Choreography

The legendary dance talents of Fred Astaire were surely influenced, even enhanced, by the many dance partners, collaborators and choreographers he worked with during his iconic career. This blog post tips a hat to Hermes Pan… dancer, choreographer, collaborator and good friend of Fred Astaire for over 60 years. Born on December 10, 1909 in...

West Hartford Holiday Bonanza at our Dance Studio

You’ve elbowed your way through the mall, so clearly you like to compete. How about joining your friends on the dancefloor for a little more competition? Our West Hartford dance studio Holiday Bonanza 2015 is coming up on Saturday, Dec. 12 at the Fred Astaire Dance Studio of West Hartford. Come and join us for...

Fred Astaire Dance Partners: November Birthdays

Fred Astaire’s iconic talents as a professional dancer wouldn’t have been possible if not for his numerous & talented dance partners. Ginger Rogers may have been the most well-known, but our co-founder and namesake was fortunate to have had the opportunity to star with numerous dancers on both stage and screen. This post celebrates two dancing...

Fred Astaire Dance Partners: October Birthdays

Beyond his own talent, Fred Astaire’s success as a professional dancer wouldn’t have been possible if not for his numerous, talented dance partners. Our co-founder and namesake was fortunate to have starred with numerous dancers, on both stage and screen. This post celebrates three of his dancing co-stars with October birthdays: Claire Luce, Rita Hayworth...

Karin Roche Memorial Black Tie Event

Karin Roche was a valued student of ours for more than 15 years, and she made a big impact not only on us but the entire local dance community. She was a lovely person and we, and her family and many friends, miss her very much. We are honoring her memory at the studio on...

Join Us: Park Road Parade!

We want you! We want you to march with us in the Park Road Parade on Saturday, Oct. 3, at 10:30 a.m. Clemens will be leading our group of dancers down Park Road and we would love to have you with us, wearing any Fred Astaire Dance Studios gear you may have.  Help represent your...

It’s That Time of Year Again…. Oktoberfest!

Nothing heralds the coming of the cool fall months more than a good Oktoberfest bash. So we’re having one on Friday night at the studio from 7:30-9 p.m. You will love what we have planned, and don’t be shy about wearing lederhosen! Our Oktoberfest Party will feature beer, pretzels, German music and dance. It’s also...

The Importance of Good Technique

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When it comes to dance, no truer words were spoken than what was said by British poet and dramatist, John Dryden in the 1600’s, “Dancing is the poetry of the foot.” Whether dancing in front of an audience or dancing down a street on a sunny afternoon, the feet write and display the graceful beauty...

Beyond Dancing: the Debonair Fred Astaire

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The name of the beloved Fred Astaire is instantly recognized throughout the world. But were there aspects of Fred Astaire, besides his professional dancing and acting career, that no camera ever revealed? Upon Astaire’s death from pneumonia at age 88, New York Times dance critic, Anna Kisselgoff, said: “The magnitude of his achievement is as great a social phenomenon as it is...

Join Us: Cinco De Mayo

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We’ve got another great party coming up and the crew from Glastonbury will be joining us to create a festive Cinco de Mayo bash on Friday, May 1, at the West Hartford studio from 7:30-9 p.m. We’ll meet and greet, make some new friends and (as always) dance, dance, dance. Please wear red, green and...

Special Guest: Ilya Ifraimov To Visit Our Studio!

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  Check your calendar (and ours) and make a date with us. You won’t want to miss special guest coach Ilya Ifraimov on Tuesday, April 28, at the studio from 12:30-9 p.m. Talk to your instructor to get on Ilya’s schedule for great choreography, dancing tips and technique work. Ilya comes to us from the...

We Moved!

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Why don’t you come up and see us some time? Mae West’s memorable line is also one we’re offering up to potential students and dance fans. We’ve moved, you see. We’re in our new digs at 141 South Street, Suite F, in West Hartford. We’re still easy to find. Our new home is less than...

Join Us for Our Practice Party!

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We’re having a party! Actually, we’re having lots of them. And we hope you will join us at the Fred Astaire Dance Studio of West Hartford for dancing, fun and socializing with other like-minded people. Our West Hartford dance parties offer a fun, friendly atmosphere on Friday nights from 7:30 p.m. to 9 p.m. The...

We’ve Moved

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Visit us in our NEW location! 141 South Street Suite F., West Hartford, CT 06110, USA 860-232-2678 westhartford@fredastaire.com Hours of Operation: Monday – Friday 12:30pm – 9:00pm

Fred Facts Quiz – How Serious a Fred Astaire Fan are You?

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Do you consider yourself a true fan of Fred Astaire? Take the challenge and quiz yourself on some “Fred Facts”, then check your score below to see what kind of “Fred Fan” you really are! 1. Where was Fred Astaire born? A. Hamburg, Germany B. Linz, Austria C. Omaha, Nebraska, U.S.A 2. What was Fred...

Learn to Dance – Fred Astaire Dance Studios West Hartford

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I just put my feet in the air and move them around. ~Fred Astaire Visit our blog at: http://www.learntodancewithfred.com/west-hartford      

9 Benefits You Can Experience Once You Start Dancing

Whether you flaunt your every move on the dance floor or sway to your favorite songs in the car, dance is an activity that everybody enjoys, in one way or another. Luckily, dancing is something that will not only bring a smile to your face, but can also help improve your physical and mental health....

Barrie Chase: She Danced With a Legend

Saturday evening at the FAWC (Fred Astaire World Championships) 2014 Dance Competition in Las Vegas, the suspense rose as our (now, former) President/CEO, Jack Rothweiler, began introducing his surprise guest to the audience. He mentioned the Fred Astaire TV Specials, talked of his first meeting with this guest and their conversation of four-plus hours. Still,...

Popular Dance Movies Quiz – How Much Do YOU Know?

Dance films started out as rather classy productions, with Fred Astaire or Gene Kelly dancing in top hats, tails & spats… and often, with a lovely & talented leading lady. In later years, dance movies got downright racy as they were taken to the streets. Let’s see how much you know about some very popular...