Who can take the classes?
Currently, any member of the Claremont Colleges may enroll in or audit any the dance classes.
What are the different types of classes offered?
Seven ballroom dance courses are offered every semester at the Claremont Colleges. These classes are part of the Physical Education department of Pomona College and are open to all students of the Claremont Colleges. Courses offered include:
Beginning (Bronze) International Standard Dance
Intermediate (Silver) International Standard Dance
Beginning (Bronze) International Latin Dance
Intermediate (Silver) International Latin Dance
Advanced (Gold) International Latin Dance
Beginning Social Dance
- International Standard focuses on beauty, power, and elegance of the five classic ballroom dances -Waltz, Tango, Viennese Waltz, Foxtrot, and Quickstep. The classes focus exclusively on closed steps and movements, though some open or American stylings may be briefly discussed. Competitive dance style will be emphasized by tracking the evolution of social dance into competitive paradigms. Gold Standard is not currently offered, but let us know if you are interested in a class at that level.
- International Latin brings the precision, intensity, and sensuality of the five International Latin and American dances to the Claremont Colleges Community. Cha Cha, Rumba, Samba, Paso Doble, and Jive are the dances covered in the style, and participants will be taught competitive stylings with a basis in social dance.
- Social dance brings the stylings and creative power of street and social (partner) dance to the floor. Lindy-hop, Rock Jive, Salsa, Merengue, Cha Cha, Blues, East Coast Swing and West Coast Swing mix with the practicalities of social Waltz and Foxtrot, all infused with a bit of hip-hop and liquid styling.
What do the different levels (bronze, silver, gold) mean?
- Bronze levels are intended to be introductory classes. They tend to be larger, and be much less intense than the other levels. Both Bronze Latin and Standard split the focus between technique and choreography (steps). Bronze Social, on the other hand, focuses almost exclusively on choreography and styling. Bronze classes should prepare you to take Silver classes in the same style after two semesters for International Latin and Standard, and after one semester for Social.
- Silver levels are intended for dancers with some experience. The Standard and Latin styles focus much more heavily on technique and are significantly more intense, requiring an outside of class commitment of usually 30 minutes per class. Silver social, on the other hand, focuses heavily on advanced choreography and partner work (tension, momentum, tone, etc.). Silver classes should prepare you to take Gold level classes in the same style after two semesters.
- Gold levels are intended for the most advanced dancers in the Claremont Colleges community. Participation is by instructor permission only, and the classes themselves are rigorous in both technique and choreography. The classes require an outside commitment of 60 minutes of practice between classes, and also involve a writing and analysis component. Students typically stay in Gold level classes indefinitely (some students have taken six semesters of Gold level classes), usually combining the group instruction with private instruction after a semester or two.