Rueda Michiana teaches residents a Cuban salsa dance

GRANGER, Ind. - One local dance group is teaching Michiana residents Rueda de Casino, a Cuban salsa dance often compared to Cuban square dancing.

“Salsa is an international dance at this point. It has many different influences. It has Afro-Cuban influences, it has influences from Puerto Ricans and Dominicans from New York City. Music, dance, all those traditions are really this beautiful melting pot in what salsa has become today,” Laura Williamson, Main Instructor for Rueda Michiana said.

Williamson and Freeman Farrell met 20 years ago at the University of Michigan at a dance studio. Years later, the two reunited at South Bend Latin Dance. The idea of starting a Rueda de Casino group came about and Rueda Michiana was born.

Rueda, which means wheel in Spanish, was created in the early 1950s in Cuba. It's a group dance where everyone is in a circle. The dance moves are called out by the caller. The beauty of Rueda, according to Williamson and Freeman, is the constant switching of partners which allows stepping out your comfort zone and quickly learning on the fly.

Classes are every other Sunday at the Movement Made Beautiful dance studio in Granger. They have beginner and intermediate classes starting at $10 and are welcome to everyone.

“You learn at your own pace. Just because you can’t make a particular class, that doesn’t mean you’re out. We welcome you. We're still learning, we know a lot more than the people we teach but we’re learning all the time, especially with Rueda you learn at your own pace. You're welcome, don’t let it stop you because you missed one,” Freeman Farrell, Assistant Instructor for Rueda Michiana said.

Click here for more information about classes. 

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