Kasia here, the head & heart behind Salsa Solent. I have loved dancing ever since I was a child and have always enjoyed exploring new styles. I still remember the day I first discovered Latin dancing. A university friend sent me an amazing video of Ataca Y Alemana Te Extrano. I was mesmerised and made it my mission to find out more about this beautiful dance style.
With little help from Google, I found a local school – Ritmo Latino – and signed up right away. I arrived at least 15 minutes early for my first class to a little studio, knowing, that this would be something completely out of my comfort zone – I never ever had to shake my booty or shimmy shimmy before!
It turned out that I was attending a salsa class, not bachata like the video I watched, but I quickly fell in love with the energy and passion of the music and dance and my salsa journey started…
Not long after I had the opportunity to dance, teach, choreograph and perform with my Cuban teacher Yosmaikel Delgado Gomez.
The idea of creating Salsa Solent was born during my trip to Cuba in December 2018. The Cuban people were so welcoming and the sense of community—despite language differences— that dancing brought was inspiring. I had to bring the tropical heat and energy to a ‘grey and miserable’ England!
I remember talking to my friend on the way to a local salsa event about my plans. It would be something new to introduce to people – there weren’t structured salsa courses in the Portsmouth area before, but that was the only way I could see it happening. And it did happen!
I started my first course at the end of January 2019. Not much later I set up another…and another! Soon I realised that we were not just providing classes, but also creating a community.
That led us to organise our first social dance on 2nd July 2019 at 113 The Art Coffee House in Southsea. The community was growing week by week, and the word spread out of the city bringing in more and more dancers. It wasn’t long till we had to move to a bigger venue – Outside-In.
We started running salsa, bachata, and solo classes, and also organised community dance projects and workshops with top-class instructors. We have come so far but there is still so much more to come! We are 100% ready to be dancing with you!