New studio dancing its way into the heart of Docklands
The Mbassy Dance has only just recently established itself on Collins St in Docklands, but it’s already looking ahead to the festive season and ways to spread the Christmas joy through dance.
The chance to launch two unique events has come about for the studio after they were successful in receiving a grant from the City of Melbourne’s Christmas Collective program, an initiative aimed at casting a new light on the festive season.
As someone who knows all too well about the positive benefits of dancing after being a freelance instructor for 14 years, The Mbassy Dance founding director Minx Hafon is looking forward to helping locals understand that anyone and everyone can dance.
“People dance for so many reasons. There are the social interactions you get especially from partner styles where you get to connect with different people while dancing, and then there’s the physical exercise aspect which is of course endorphins,” Minx said.
“Some people also say it is better than therapy, so there is that as well.”
Labelling salsa as “literally fancy walking”, Minx is hopeful that people in and around the city will make the most of the free Salsa in the City beginner dance sessions in the style of Salsa and Bachata.
The sessions will take place at Collins Landing from December 6 to 22, 5.30pm to 7pm, every Tuesday and Thursday, and are a chance for the new studio to bring the community together to share in its love of Latin culture.
To round off the December celebrations, The Mbassy Dance will also be hosting A Cuban Christmas Party that will involve a South American barbeque, followed by lots of dancing and socialising.
“We will have a little dance lesson at the start so people can feel what it is like, then there will be a circle of dancers, and you can switch partners constantly,” Minx said.
“There will also be live drums, Latin DJs, and we will dance until the sun sets by the river.”
Sharing in the joy of dancing has always been the goal of The Mbassy Dance, and now through the dance company’s first official studio it’s determined to remain focused in “encouraging everybody to dance”, while also teaching people about each dance style’s culture.
“We have a big focus on the culture and stories behind the dance styles, so you are not just learning the routine and some steps, but you are also learning what it is called, why it is called that, where it is from, and what it means,” Minx said.
“All those things make the dance experience so much richer and paint a picture of the culture it comes from.”
The Mbassy Dance primarily works on a term-by-term basis, but it also offers casual class passes to people if it is needed, or if they want to use the first week of a term trying out all the beginner classes to see what one best works for them.
Currently on the timetable The Mbassy Dance has 14 different dance classes, including Bachata, Cuban Salsa, Afro Salsa, Latin Fusion and Twerk 101, and the classes are offered on a weekly basis as practice and consistency is key.
Some of the classes are also still offered over Zoom to help people who may have to miss a session or want to get in some extra practice.
The Mbassy Dance is part of the Shopfront Activation Program, which is part of the City of Melbourne and Victorian Government’s $100 million Melbourne City Recovery Fund, and Minx said they are hopeful to make Docklands more “nice and colourful, and active”.
The Mbassy Dance can be found at 915 Collins St. •
For more information: thembassy.com.au