Ballroom Dancing

Archived Q&A and Reviews

2008 - 2011 Reviews

Private dance lessons for my husband and me

Oct 2011

I would like to buy my husband and myself some private dance lessons for our anniversary- probably swing and/or salsa. Does anyone have a recommendation for 2 shy, no confidence on the dance floor people? anon

I'm glad I can refer you to a terrific dance teacher-Laurie Ann Lepoff. She's in Oakland and teaches all kinds of social dance for, as she says, ''shy people and klutzes.'' Her website is and her phone number is 444 4621. My husband took classes from her and he no longer embarrasses himself. sy

Laurie Ann at is the person for you both. I have known her for a while and have met several of her clients who speak so highly of her. Visit her website to find out more. Rosie

Laurie Ann Lepoff (social dancing for shy people and klutzes) is great. My husband and I took lessons leading up to our wedding so we would be ready for the first dance. My husband is not a dancer. At all. Really, he pretty much never dances, and neither of us had done any ballroom dancing. We ended up wowing the wedding guests. I highly recommend her. Her website is: Carrie

Hi Anon, I know a wonderful swing dance instructor named Carla Heiney who gives privates and is phenomenal with beginners. You will love her! Check out her website and tell her I sent you! Carla Heiney carlaheiney [at] 415 225 8570 Regards, Heidi

Try Allegra Ballroom in Emeryville. It is a cooperative. I think group salsa is Wednesday and Sunday evenings, but you can arrange private lessons. It is across from the B of A off the Powell St exit. The parking lot entrance is on Christie. They also have frequent dance parties which are well attended. cocosar41 [at]

Lori Ann Lepoff teaches social dance for shy people and clutzes. I've seen her dance and she's incredible. Best of luck to you. Her number is 444-4621.

Ballroom dance lessons during the day?

Oct 2011

I am in my mid-thirties and have never taken a dance class in my life but have such a desire to learn ballroom dance - the cha cha, tango, swing, etc. I am looking for a dance instructor or studio that teaches during the day. I live in Berkeley and would like to stay as local as possible. I think I prefer private lessons, but am open to smaller group lessons as well. Any suggestions? Want to dance

Laurie Ann Lepoff is a dance instructor with a studio in Oakland. She teaches all types of dancing including ballroom. For my son's senior project, he wanted to learn ballroom dancing. Although Laurie Ann offers a variety of class structures, my son's lessons were private. He enjoyed his lessons and felt comfortable with her. She offers her lessons during the day in addition to evening hours. Her number is 510-444-4621. Web: rishida

Ballroom Dance Class for Teens

June 2011

I am looking for Summer Ballroom Dance Class for Teens. Can anyone give me some suggestions? Thanks! Karen

Look online for the many ballroom dancing opportunities in the greater Bay Area: There is a Gaskell Ball in Oakland every other month. The next is Sat June 18th, with a three-hour dance class in the afternoon that only costs $10. While many Dickens Fair and Civil War reenactors wear period clothes to the actual ball, modern dressup clothes are perfectly fine, and lots of college folk attend.

There is also a Second Saturday Waltz at Lake Merritt, preceded by dance classes.

For English Regency dances, Google PEERS. For waltzes and traditional American line dances, check out the contra dance schedules ( Dancing Fool

2004 - 2007 Reviews

Oct 2007

Looking for intro, fun ballroom dancing classes for my husband and me - preferably in Walnut Creek or Lamorinda. Preferably weekends. Thank you.

The Lafayette Dance Center at 3369 Mt. Diablo Blvd. in Lafayette has Argentine Tango group lessons Friday nights at 8:00pm Kris

Nov 2002

I would like to find a school that gives dance classes for adults preferably in the East Bay (but SF is ok too). My husband and I need to learn how to dance together to contemporary music and perhaps some classics like walzer, etc... I checked older referrals but they are very limited. Thank you!

My husband and I have taken good beginning classes from Charlene Van Ness at the Albany Community Center. She also teaches other places so check for her flyers at the Community Center. Another friend is taking lessons at the Dance Easy on San Pablo near the El Cerrito Mall. People seem to enjoy them although I personally have not taken there. Have fun!! kathryn

I don't know much about resources in the east bay, being a recent SF transplant, but Metronome Ballroom in the Portrero neighborhood, has a variety of different partner dance class offerings, and they offer private lessons as well. I don't know if they address your specific issues, but perhaps they could refer you. Their website is Happy Dancing

I am so glad to be able to steer you to Paul Overton and Sharon Ashe at . Paul and Sharon specialize in swing and lindy hop (what fun!), but also teach foxtrot, waltz, etc. (no latin, sorry) They start everyone off with a session of ''moving together'', which we found to be the most rewarding part of the whole session. Paul and Sharon are VERY patient teachers, and do both large group and smaller seminars. They also have a DVD out called ''The Wedding Dance'' that helps couples prepare for partner dancing at their wedding. I highly recommend the DVD too! They teach in Glenview, just off Park Bl. and also in San Francisco (I think at the Metronome Ballroom). Have fun! -Jon

i'm not sure what sorts of dance classes you mean, but ballroom (which usually includes swing and salsa and tango) classes for complete beginners are available at both the danceasy (el cerrito) and the allegro ballroom (emeryville)-- if you look at their schedules they say what they have for total beginners and when, as well as other stuff.... ( and i think)--have fun! --

Check out the Berkeley Adult School. They have a bunch of ballroom dance classes and it is a very informal comfortable setting. Gil Chun is the instructor and is very patient. The website is: . Also it is relatively inexpensive. Once you learn some steps, check out the Allegro Ballroom in Emeryville ( ). Enjoy and happy dancing!!! Suzanna

2003 & Earlier


Is anyone familiar with the ballroom dancing classes for adults in East Bay ? Thanks Simona

The Allegro Ballroom in Emeryville is a fun start. My husband and I went for a date to a group dance class on a Friday evening. The location was spacious and well ventilated which is crucial because you would be amazed by the sweating you do! We initially assumed we would be dancing together the whole time, but instead the class is organized so you end up dancing with every other partner with each new increment of steps learned. It's located behind Wells Fargo and Denny's at Powell and Christie. I found a web site: Rue

The Allegro Ballroom located at 5855 Christie Avenue in Emeryville is the place to learn social dance: Fox trot, Swing, Tango, Nightclub 2 step, Lindy, Salsa & more

I highly recommend Charlene VanNess, though I don't know where she is teaching classes currently. You might check either the Berkeley or Albany YMCA, and I think she might also teach an exercise class at Jazzercise in El Cerrito. She has a mailer she sends out for her dance classes. She makes the classes fun and never makes you feel self-conscious. And you don't change partners like you do in other classes. My husband and I found going to dance class on Friday night to be a great way to transition from the work week to the weekend. Of course, this was before children... K.