Classes

Burlington Westie classes are taught on Tuesday evenings from 7pm to 9pm at the North End Studios. Classes begin on the first Tuesday of the month and continue for four weeks. There are typically three classes each week. Admission covers any combination of classes, and the after class social dancing. Beginners are welcome to come early to watch and/or try intermediate classes.

An example schedule:
schedule

Classes are also listed on our google calendar.

Admission

4 Week Series: $46, Students $32 (8 hours of class, 4+ hours of social dancing)
Drop In: $16, Students $11 (up to 2 one hour long classes, 1+ hours of social dancing)
Social Dancing only: $5

September Classes (Two Remain!)

4 Week Series, Tuesday Evenings September 4th, 11th, 18th, 25th

Schedule
7pm All Level West Coast Swing: Turn Technique and Patterns – for returning students
8pm Experienced West Coast Swing: Leveraged Patterns and Positions
8pm Foundational West Coast Swing
9pm After Class Dancing!!!

All Level West Coast Swing – Turn Technique and Patterns.  This class is designed to introduce returning dancers to good turn technique, remind experienced followers about turn technique and improve their turn technique.  Balance, spotting, and footwork are in store, that applies to experienced leaders as well.  We will teach increasingly difficult patterns involving turns as the month goes on.  But beginning with a focus on the core skills required to lead a follower to turn well.

Experienced West Coast Swing – Leveraged Patterns and Positions.  As our repertoire of patterns grow and get harder to classify, so to do they get harder to lead and follow.  Some of them appear a lot at BWestie, so we all get through them, but not well.  Others don’t appear much here at all, and we think that teaching you better will help fix that as well.  This month we will focus on those involving leverage and strong connection. 

Foundational West Coast Swing – Join Alison and Adam in our Beginner Series to build a solid foundation in West Coast Swing! Whether it’s your first or fifteenth time with us, there will be something for you to improve and work at in each lesson.  They’ll be there to answer your questions and help you feel more comfortable on the dance floor! This class is still first-timer friendly! No experience or partner necessary.  (We recommend starting for the first time on the first class of the series) 

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October Classes

4 Week Series, Tuesday Evenings October 2nd, 9th, 16th, 23rd

Schedule
7pm General West Coast Swing: Dips, Tricks & Flash with Whips
8pm Experienced West Coast Swing: Dips, Tricks & Flash with Whips
8pm Foundational West Coast Swing
9pm After Class Dancing!!!

General & Experienced Levels of West Coast Swing will cover the same topics, but stratify by complexity – Join us for a unit on Whip Variations as well as Dips, Tricks & Flash.  Whips are a broad category of 8 count patterns, and those two extra counts provide us with a multitude of ways we can change them up!  Another way we can explore variation in our dance is through adding little “extras” which have a big impact.  These small pieces of variation or punctuation can really spice up a dance floor!  So, are you ready to get creative with us?

Foundational West Coast Swing – Join Lexi and Adam in our Beginner Series to build a solid foundation in West Coast Swing! Whether it’s your first or fifteenth time with us, there will be something for you to improve and work at in each lesson.  They’ll be there to answer your questions and help you feel more comfortable on the dance floor! This class is still first-timer friendly! No experience or partner necessary.

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Admission
4 Week Series: $46, Full Time Students $32
Drop In per Evening: $16, Students $11
Social Dancing only: $5
See you on the dance floor!

November Classes*

4 Week Series, Tuesday Evenings *beginning October 30th!
Continuing November 6th, 13th, 20th

December Classes*

4 Week Series, Tuesday Evenings *beginning November 27th!
Continuing December 4th, 11th, 18th

Check out our Flash Mob video that Helmut edited for us last year!

FAQ

Do I need a partner?
No! Our classes are open to everyone and we rotate partners frequently. You will meet and practice with a wide variety of dancers.

How do I register?
Come to the first class and pay by cash, check (Burlington Westie), or credit card (2.75% fee).

Where do I sign in?
Everyone signs in at the front desk in Studio A.

I missed the first class, can I start the second week?
Yes! You may start a series on the second week or pay the Drop In rate for any class in a series. If you’re starting late or dropping in, it is your responsibility to catch up. Our instructors do not re-teach material from previous weeks if the rest of class is ready to move on.

What should I bring?
Bring clean shoes to dance in and a water bottle. Change into your dance shoes at the studio to keep the soles clean and protect the dance floor from dirt and moisture.

What shoes should I wear?
Dig through your closet for something that is low friction, lightweight, and comfortable. Try spinning on a smooth floor, the more rotation the better. Avoid grippy rubber soles!

High heels feel unstable when dancing West Coast Swing, so most westies wear low chunky heels or flats.

The best place to buy dance shoes is at large weekend events where you can try on dozens of styles. If you just want something to get started, we recommend the old “classic” style TOMS. TOMS are great dance shoes because they’re lightweight, spin great, and only cost $50. You can find them at Journeys in the University Mall. Once you know your size you can also order online. If you have a choice go for lightweight materials.

Am I ready for the Intermediate/Advanced classes?
Class levels define the difficulty of the material, not the level of the students in the class. We allow you to self select class levels, with the caveat that you read and follow the guidelines below. This is what we expect each of our class levels to already know:

Intermediate West Coast Swing – Identify the downbeat and upbeat in the music, and start each pattern on the downbeat with the correct foot
– Understand 6 count and 8 count rhythm patterns, and the difference between a double and a triple
– Connect comfortably in open
– Demonstrate the footwork for a Left Side Pass, Underarm Pass, Push Break, and Whip without a partner
– Dance a Left Side Pass, Underarm Pass, Push Break, and Whip with a partner
Advanced West Coast Swing – All of the Intermediate requirements (Mandatory!)
– Identify and dance on the beat in a wide variety of West Coast Swing music
– Use safe muscle groups and posture when connecting in open and closed
– Comfortable with a majority of the intermediate patterns: Starter Step, Inside Roll, Push Tuck, Passing Tuck, Reverse Whip, Whip with Outside Turn
Intermediate Fusion – Can easily find and stay on the beat
– Connect comfortably in open and closed
– Lead/follow inside and outside turns and rotation
– Comfortable traveling the floor in closed
Advanced Fusion – All of the Intermediate requirements
– Hear and predict music patterns while dancing
– Dance on different multiples of the beat
– Connect comfortably in close embrace
– Share a spin axis smoothly and safely
– Travel the floor in varied connections/positions/directions

Can my partner and I dance together the entire class instead of rotating?
Sure, but we encourage students to rotate. Couples who get the feedback of dancing with a variety of partners learn faster and have more enjoyable social dances together. If you wish to opt out of the rotation, let the instructors know and make it clear to the other students.

I predominantly lead/follow, is it okay if retake the beginner series as a follow/lead?
Yes! We love when our advanced students invest the time to learn the opposite role. It dramatically improves their understanding of the dance and helps us balance out leader/follower ratios. The majority of high-level dancers are fluent in both leading and following.