with Graham and Nathalie
This is the first week that we have been able to run classes in forever, and it was a great feeling to get back into our venues. Well, one of our old venues and one new one... but more about that later. It was great to see so many familiar faces there - as well as some new people who somehow heard about us during the down-time - and you are all very very welcome.
It is strange that in some ways it feels like we have hardly been away, and yet in others it's almost impossible to remember what classes were like in the BC era*. Coming back was something that was very familiar, and yet getting ready on Wednesday afternoon for that first evening class in South Norwood was almost as stressful as getting ready for my first ever class in Bletchingley all those years ago. I was convinced I was going to have forgotten something important (we don't need music, right?) or turn up to the wrong venue or something, but somehow it all came together and the class was just as much fun as they used to be. Which was a bit of a relief, I must say. ;-)
During the down-time a few people asked me if I would ever start the classes again, or if having them cancelled like that was too much stress. If I started again would I concentrate on privates instead of classes? Would it be all about the social dancing and less about teaching? These were all valid questions and they did make me think, but the more I thought about it the more I knew that teaching was what I wanted to be doing. Teaching tango has made me a better dancer than I ever would have been otherwise, as it made me think in detail about how the dance works and what to do to make it work better. But as well as that aspect of teaching there is simply the fact that I love to share this dance with anyone who wants to listen. It is a part of who I am now, and I want to spread the tango love.
And now we are back. We have reopened in one of our old familiar venues and have started a new class in a venue that we only recently discovered existed.
We have been at St Luke's Church Hall since the summer of 2018 and have got on well there so are very glad to be back in there every Thursday night now. It has a lovely polished wooden floor that is great for tango, a kitchen that joins onto the the main hall where we can make tea and coffee, and easy access from the street. There is no on-site parking, but there is usually plenty of free space in Eardley Road or one of the other nearby roads to leave the car and it's a very quiet road as it does not really go from or to anywhere.
Our other venue is new to us, and it was only recently that we discovered it even existed. Croydon Youth Theatre Organisation (CYTO) operate out of a building in Oakley Road, South Norwood, and one of the rooms is a purpose-designed dance studio with wooden floor, a mirrored wall, a barre, and plenty of natural light. When we found out that Stanley Halls (our previous South Norwood venue) were tripling the price on us after the down-time we knew we had to move, and so we started looking around for somewhere not too far away and with as good - or better - facilities. And almost by accident we discovered CYTO. It was our first session there this week and we all loved it, so hopefully we will be there for a long time.
So if you are near Sevenoaks on a Thursday night or South Norwood on a Wednesday night and would like to try tango, drop in to one of our classes. All the details including maps and other relevant information can be found by clicking on the links on our diary page, so have a browse and get in touch if there is anything else you want to know.
Classes are back! And that makes me very happy.
*Before Covid, obviously. I'm not that old.
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