Tallahassee Latin Dance Fest

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About

The Tallahassee Latin Dance Festival is a weekend of culture, fun, and fitness. This is year 3 for this fun filled event. It features dance workshops (beginners, intermediate, and advanced dancers) including bachata, casino, cha cha cha, kizomba, mambo, tango, and  salsa.  TLDF also has performances by world class dancers and instructors, not to mention your favorite local salsa (casino, mambo, LA) and bachata companies. Dance the night away to live music and top nationally recognized DJs.  We have grown so we are holding the event at a large Conference Center called the Moon (1105 E. Lafayette Street, Tallahassee, FL 32301)  and our guests are staying at Home 2 Suites by Hilton  (210 S. Magnolia St, Tallahassee, Fl 32301)


Testimonials

Great event, BRAVO! Could have danced all night- oh wait- WE DID! - Susan Morrison

The Tallahassee Latin Dance Festival delivered what they promised. Epic does not begin to describe how amazing this festival has been. – DJ Style

Schedule

Event Schedule

Friday
Night Theme: White Party
8:00 PM Registration
9:00 PM Workshop
10:00 PM Social dancing ends at 2:30 am

Saturday
Night Theme: Red Carpet Night
10:30 AM Registration
11:00 AM Workshops
5:00 PM Tech Rehearsal
7:00 PM Evening Workshop
8:30 PM Performances
10:00 PM Social Dancing (social dancing ends at 2:30 am)

Sunday
Night Theme: Superheroes
10:30 AM Registration
11:00 AM Workshops
5:00 PM Tech Rehearsal
6:00 PM Registration
8:00 PM Performances
Jack and Jill Latin Dance Championships with artists
10:00 PM Social Dancing (ends at 2:30 am)

Headliners

Marcos and Tabitha

Marcos and Tabitha

Marcos and Tabitha

Representing the Midwest out of Chicago and Milwaukee,  Marcos and Tabitha bring their own “Sabor a Mambo.” Focusing on both Salsa and Bachata, #TMT, teaches and performs through out the United States with their next goal in mind of going International. 

Delia Madera

Delia Madera

Delia Madera

Charlie

Charlie Garcia

Charlie Garcia

Charlie Garcia is a world-renowned salsa dancer, instructor and choreographer based in NYC.  At an early age, he began training at the prestigious Bronx Dance Theater and later on at Usher’s Camp dance program.  He was exposed to Latin dancing at his parent’s nightclub as a teenager which drove him to take on Salsa as his biggest passion.  Soon after, he began training and performing with the best groups in the Salsa scene.  His dynamic and authentic style gained him recognition and has allowed him to showcase his talent at some of the greatest performance venues for Latin dancing.  Charlie has danced alongside Latin music icons such as Richie Ray, Bobby Cruz, Oscar D’ Leon, Gloria Estefan and others.  Some of his latest work includes both choreographing and dancing for the upcoming film “SHINE”, and being featured as dancer on NBC’s Best Time Ever w/ Neil Patrick Harris.

Edwin Rivera - Headliners

Edwin Rivera

Edwin Rivera

Edwin is one of the most influential salsa dancers, choreographers, instructors and musicians of our generation. With a career spanning almost two decades he brings his Puerto Rican swag, with an innovative and creative style to the dance floor, the stage and to our ears. He has worked mainstream films with his idols Jennifer Lopez & Marc Anthony in this film “El Cantante” as the only solo dancer for the feature film. Edwin has also worked with celebrities such as Ashton Kutcher, Ben Stiller Jennifer Anniston, Rob Schneider just to name a few. Edwin Rivera the Musician & Music Producer. In 2009 Edwin launch his first album Soul of a Dancer in Japan, the country that gave him his first big break as a dancer. In March 2013, he launched his sophomore album MIME ~ Music Is My Everything with Latin sounds infused with today’s dance music of House, Hip Hop, Dubstep and R&B.

Performers & Instructors

Kizomba_profile_pic

Davidson St Fort

Davidson St Fort

lri2rev

Liquid Rhythm Inc

Liquid Rhythm Inc

benandcynthia

Ben “Iceman” Lopez and Cynthia Kessler

Ben “Iceman” Lopez and Cynthia Kessler

Ben “Iceman” Lopez & Cynthia Kessler
From Orlando, Florida. Ben (Iceman) and Cynthia have danced together for five years and are part of the UA Latin Dance Team. Together they have performed at major salsa events in Canada, Berlin, Athens, Munich, Manila and more. Recently they won third place in the Rising Star Cabaret division at the World Salsa Summit. This couple is quickly becoming recognized for their dazzling lifts and high risk acrobatics.

Sean&Katrise3

Sean and Katrise

Sean and Katrise

Sean Steele is the Co Owner of Tumbao Dance Studio in Jacksonville, Florida. He was born in Jamaica and has loved dancing all his life. He has taught Rueda de Casino (Miami Style) along with Salsa and Bachata but has a love for many styles of dance as he has received training in West Coast Swing, Argentine Tango, New York Style Salsa (On 2), and Club Cha-Cha-Cha.

Widely regarded as one of the best leads in Florida, Sean believes that dancing skill should be built on a strong foundation of fundamentals and that dancing should flow, be effortless and enjoyable through your connection with your partner and music. His dance motto “dance from within” embodies his passion for dancing, teaching and music.

Katrise Armour-Kalugin was born in Fayetteville, North Carolina and is of Cuban American descent. Born into a military family and exposed to music, dance and art from a young age, Katrise truly appreciates exposing one’s heart to all the world has to offer.

With nearly 13 years of dance experience, Katrise has training in Latin dance, ballet, ballroom, jazz, modeling and acting. What truly sets her apart is her experience in education where she taught for over 10 years throughout Duval County at various levels in middle-school, high school and junior college in mathematics and accounting. This knowledge, combined with her dance experience allows her to explain nearly any dance move, step, isolation or combination in its simplest form. Katrise is not only an amazing follower, but a skilled dance leader which makes it easy for her to explain dance from both a leader’s and follower’s perspective – invaluable!

LizJustin

Liz and Justin

Liz and Justin

Originally from New York City, born to Puerto Rican and Dominican parents, Liz’s upbringing had major elements of Latin music and its culture. Justin is also from the northeast, having been raised in New Jersey, and is of Cuban and Dominican descent. Together, they are the Directors of Bachata and Salsa teams throughout Florida – Orlando & Tampa – chapters of the world-renowned dance company Island Touch Dance Academy.
Liz gained firsthand exposure to the Latin dance world when she moved to Tampa, FL in 2007. After training for almost 2 years in the Cuban “Casino” Salsa style with Salsamania, she wanted to expand her dance horizons. In 2009, she began taking Salsa classes at Island Touch Dance Academy. There, her love for On2/Mambo and Bachata was born. Liz had the privilege of spending the next few years studying directly under the tutelage of Bachata power couple Jorge “Ataca” Burgos and Tanja “La Alemana” Kensinger. She was a dancer on many of their Salsa and Bachata teams, as well as the studio’s manager. Her national & international performances with Island Touch — along with Jayson Molina’s Rompecabeza Miami and Es El Amor from Orlando — include congresses and festivals in the Dominican Republic, New York, Washington, DC, Los Angeles, and throughout her new home state of Florida.
Justin was drawn to the dance community while in college at the University of Central Florida. He was an active member of UCF’s Latin dance club Pulso Caribe, later becoming the main instructor, even after graduating. In 2011, he joined his first Bachata dance team with Orlando’s largest dance studio, Salsa Heat. There, he continued to train and perform for four seasons after. Justin began training with Liz and became Co-Director of Island Touch teams in Miami, Orlando, and Tampa in 2013. They have performed together at events throughout the U.S. and in the Dominican Republic.
Liz & Justin are the Directors of FIVE Island Touch Bachata & Salsa teams throughout Florida: Ladies Touch shine/styling teams and Salsa teams in both Orlando and Tampa, as well as the Tampa Touch co-ed Bachata team. They are motivated and fueled by the joy it brings them to see the determination, growth, and accomplishment in their dancers season after season.

Azucar

Azúcar Dance Company

Azúcar Dance Company

Established in the year 2000, ¡Azúcar! Dance Company is a non-profit student organization from Florida State University (FSU) which teaches the Cuban dance of casino to the Tallahassee community. ¡Azúcar!, whose literal meaning in English is “sugar,” offers free lessons every semester and encourages students to not only advance as dancers, but to integrate as part of the ¡Azúcar! Team. The team is active in the Tallahassee community through the hosting of casino lessons, performing, and participating in community service endeavors, which are all open and available to the public regardless of age, race, sex, religion, student status or school affiliation.

Corazon Dancers - Performers

Corazón Dancers

Corazón Dancers

Established in 2001 by four passionate Salsa Dancers, Corazon Dancers goal is to provide the Tallahassee community with the knowledge of Los Angeles (LA) Style Salsa. The Corazón Dancers is a Non-Profit Latin dance student organization from Florida State University where they spread their passion for salsa and teach others to dance con el Corazón.

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Tallahassee Salsa Dancers

Tallahassee Salsa Dancers

Tallahassee Salsa Dancers, founded in 2012, was developed as a community based latin dance team that focuses on sharing the love of latin dance with the Big Bend Area. Previously, the latin dance scene was built by student run teams. TSD was created to keep the scene active in Tallahassee year round. This includes group or private lessons, dance workshops, latin dance social events, and performances. TSD is comprised of 3 active dance teams Mambo Team, Bachata Ladies Styling Team, and Mambo Ladies Styling team. Only existing for32 years, performances include Atlanta Bachata Fest, Unity Dance, Jacksonville Salsa Jam, Tallahassee Latin Dance Festival, Paradise Dance Festival, Texas Salsa Congress and many more.

ChristianSolo-Performers

Christian Solo

Christian Solo

Born and raised in Puerto Rico, Christian performed with hip-hop and folkloric groups throughout the island. In 2006, Christian launched his distinct style of Bachata, “Sensual Bachata”. The style focuses on connection and blends traditional techniques while drawing on influences from Tango, Waltz, Bolero and Rumba. In 2009, Christian founded Sensual Bachata out of Orlando Florida. This group has performed domestically and internationally. Christian has been featured as a headlining instructor and performer at various events throughout the U.S., and abroad, and is recognized as one of Florida’s top dance instructors specializing in the Bachata genre. Christian teaches and performs with his dance company Sensual Bachata, headlines as a DJ, host and personality at major venues throughout the U.S., and producing entertainment events through his events and promotions label Bahari. He spearheads two major events in Florida, Unity of Dance and Paradise Dance Festival.

JorgeAlberto-Performers

Jorge Alberto

Jorge Alberto

Jorge Alberto and his partner Christina Farrell are the dynamic leaders of Ritmo Urbano in Tampa, Florida. Jorge has loved to dance all of his life and has pursued his career within the salsa and bachata scene in West Florida. He has been instructing students around the country and is known for his fun and instructive personality in the classroom. He was also part of one of the top salsa and bachata dance companies in the world, Island Touch Dance Academy. While having strong leading abilities, Jorge is also well- versed in following and ladies styling. While having a passion for salsa, Jorge also developed a strong passion for bachata. He is currently the Bachata and salsa Director at Flava Fitness Studio in Tampa, Florida and is director of Ritmo Urbano. He strives to share his love for salsa and bachata with all dancers around the world.

Fuego Y Hielo Dance - Performers

Fuego Y Hielo

Fuego Y Hielo

Fuquan Ferrell and Candace Joyner (The directors and founders of Fuego Y Hielo): Fuquan and Candace had their first dance at the Atlanta Bachata Festival of 2012. Candace’s previous experience in gymnastics and Fuquan’s previous dance background in martial arts experience produced a wildly different style of Bachata. They are partners in Proyecto Barrio Dance Company’s pro team. They’ve both danced and performed with Bacahtamante Dance Company as well. Fuquan and Candace have a passion for all three major latin dances (Salsa, Bachata and Cha Cha) equally, and through their time have developed a unique style they call Playful dancing.

Amy Figueiras Dominguez - Performer

Amy Figueiras Dominguez

Amy Figueiras Dominguez

In 2005, Amy was introduced to the Salsa scene. Raised in a Cuban, Amy’s connection with salsa/mambo was instant. Amy’s experience in dance genres are wide including jazz, tap, ballet, hip-hop, modern, and african dance. Amy was the youngest dancer of DC ShowBiz, an inner city dance company and was trained by masters of dance genres, which include, Napolean Dumo, Brian Freeman, Fatima, Rhapsody, Toni Lombre, Debbie Allen, George Faison, and various Alvin Ailey dancers. Amy also worked on BET’S Teen Summit and danced for artist such as B2K, Lil BowWow, Mary Mary, Terror Squad, Charlie Baltimore, Genuine, Wu Tang, Lil Wayne, Ja Rule, DMX, and Black Eyed Peas. In 2009 Amy relocated to Orlando Florida and began studying Mambo at Universal Mambo dance Academy. In 2013, Amy transitioned to a solo artist and founded her Ladies Styling dance team Es El Amor.

Music

mike-calderon-new-york-salsa-congress-2

DJ Mike Calderon

DJ Mike Calderon

Mike Calderon is a native born and raised in the Magic City of Miami with descendents from Quito, Ecuador.
From a very young age, Salsa music with Puerto Rican and New York roots is what he listened to the most. The more bands and artists he listened to, the more his love for latin music grew and more passion came along with it.
At 21, he started taking Casino salsa lessons and that is where his journey to become a very popular local DJ began. Mastering Casino, he took his dancing to the next level with LA Style and On2 on his own with no classes, just by being in the socials and with other dancers.
DJ Mike Calderon has been doing weekly and monthly events since 23 years old in the salsa scene in Miami.  He has worked with many dance schools and owners and has been invited to DJ at Congresses multiple times such as, the New York Salsa Congress, the Orlando Salsa Congress, International Salsa Bachata Congress in Tampa, Born To Salsa Social, just to name a few.
DJ Oso

DJ Oso

DJ Oso


Amaury ‘DJ OSO’ Diaz  is born and raised in Orlando and has family all from Puerto Rico. Being no stranger to turntables, he spent hours behind the ones and twos before mixing his first salsa and bachata playlist. He was inspired by a gifted uncle Pedro Diaz who was a popular DJ in Puerto Rico. He would watch his uncle heat up the dance floor, then cool it back down again, always monitoring the  flow of the dancers as his uncle blended tracks from merengue to salsa and bachata.
Amaury ‘DJ OSO’ Diaz participated with Salsa heats training team and bachata teams. DJ OSO got his first start with the help of Mike Beriberi, by DJing at some popular Salsa Heat Friday and Saturday Night Socials. Amaury has expanded the Orlando dance scene; by starting his own new regularly attended “MatriX” Social held at the RhythmXStudio.
In keeping with his uncle’s philosophies, Amaury ‘DJ OSO’ Diaz is the ‘Dancers’ DJ; always putting the musical needs of the dance community first. As a dancer, and as a DJ, DJ OSO’s number one priority is  taking dancers into a different world when they are on the dance floor and playing the music to make that happen.
DJ Style - Music

DJ Style

DJ Style

Merlyn Diaz, AKA DJ STYLE, is a Puertorican native but started in the business in the Bronx N.Y. He brings Salsa Roots along with the urbanization of the genre. He is well known as the DJ for one of the longest latin nights in Tallahassee, Sin Fin at LaFiesta. He also DJs at Mid Town Filling Station and Los Amigos. He is a returning DJ for Tallahassee Latin Dance Festival.

He dedicates his sets to the dancers and music lovers because they are the most critical. He is a musician and well versed in percussion and piano. Music is his life. Feel The Music!

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