Samba and Bhangra in New York

Active, Music
December 1, 2009 3:30 am

It’s December 1st, which means the class schedule is adjusting at the prestigious New York City dance school The Ailey School (run by the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater). But don’t freak out—we’re not professional dancers, either, and that’s why we love (and clearly recommend) the Ailey Extension.

The Extension is the part of Alvin Ailey devoted to teaching “real people” how to dance. No experience necessary! But you still get the high ceilings and mirrored studios the spoiled Ailey School students get, and your friends will be flabbergasted when you tell them you take classes at the Alvin Ailey studios (hey, it’s not a lie!). Most classes are at night, so dropping by after work (with a change of clothes and some sneakers) is easy.

While in New York, Karina and I attended a few Masala Bhangra Workout classes with Sarina Jain and loved it so much we followed the instructor to SELF magazine’s Workout in the Park in Central Park one Saturday. If you’re not into the dance school thing and have a gym membership, she also teaches virtually the same class at CRUNCH Fitness. Here’s a peek:

But what really stole my heart is the samba. The colorfully-clad instructor, Quenia Ribeiro hails from Rio de Janeiro, where her mother was a samba dancer. She’s danced for 30 years herself, at Radio City Music Hall and even on Telemundo. Don’t miss the super-charged Saturday lesson from 4-6 p.m., when the class is full of experienced dancers and newbies, all laughing and shouting in samba lines to a live band.

In the video below, Quenia Ribeiro (in white, with the abs) and her Ailey samba dance workshop paraded up and down the streets of New York showing off new moves as part of Quenia’s “Bloco Ribeiro” event.

There aren’t any monthly membership fees or anything of the sort. Just pay per class, so if you don’t like something, you never have to go back again. It also comes in handy if you embarrass yourself horribly and can’t bear to show your face again. (I speak from experience… Let’s just say hip hop is not my thing.) New students can get the first two classes for $25 total, and afterward, each additional class is $17. You get discounts as you buy more classes at a time, and a nifty little key ring card (like at the grocery store) to store your info, so you just swipe. It beats spelling K-A-L-M-A-N-S-O-N before every class!

Happy dancing! Click here for a class schedule, or here for a printable December class calendar for the fridge.

The Ailey Extension, 405 W. 55th St. (at Ninth Avenue), New York, NY 10019, 212-405-9500, Subway: 59th St/Columbus Circle (1, 2, A, C, B).

Tara for TKGO

Related posts:



Powered by Facebook Comments

This article was written by on Tuesday, December 1, 2009 at 3:30 am. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site. Tags:

Leave a Reply

The Best Travel Instagrammers

March 15, 2013 0 comments

Here it is… We’ve been Instagramming since April 2011, and we’ve developed pretty strong feelings about our favorite traveling Instagrammers. We like to call this the “starter pack”—follow away!

Continue Reading →

Carnival in Trinidad Party Report

February 22, 2013 2 comments
Carnival in Trinidad Party Report

As promised, my coverage of Carnival in Trinidad continues. Below is my “Just Back From” post I penned for Fodor’s Travel that details the Carnival highlights, from whining, liming and feting to everything in between. Also, you can learn what exactly those Trinidadian English terms mean in the Fodor’s post linked here: Just Back From: Carnival in Trinidad I talked a bit about high-energy, have-to-move-your-body, soca music in the post. In the video below you can hear more of the […]

Continue Reading →

Food Tours and Experiences in Buenos Aires

November 13, 2013 0 comments
Food Tours and Experiences in Buenos Aires

There’s a long-awaited and much-welcomed gastronomic revolution happening in Buenos Aires at present, and locals and visitors alike are winning with dinner, lunch and every other bite. My post for Forbes details some of the best ways to get in on it with tours, a chef’s table event and if you’re in town at the right time, fairs and restaurant weeks. Buenos Aires For Foodies   Once regarded as a land for great steak and not much else when it […]

Continue Reading →

Art Classes for Beginners in NYC

January 6, 2014 2 comments
Art Classes for Beginners in NYC

Drawing and painting is a great wintertime hobby outside the typical hibernation routine, and NYC has a plethora of options. These three are my favorites for their attitude, and their relationship to the city and the art world.

Continue Reading →