UMA Journal: Scott
Scott joined our pilot month of The UMA Dip- our program designed for the absolute beginner. Hear about how his experience went!
I’ve casually seen the UMA Instagram page over the last year and was always curious in taking a class but then I remembered my dancing abilities consisted of watching YouTube tutorials videos to keep up with the latest dance trends. After that moment of clarity, I realized I had no business being in a dance class. It wasn’t until this past fall, I was in my best friend’s wedding where all the groomsmen had to do a choreographed dance. I loved the experience of learning the choreography and performing the dance at the reception. Fast forward to this past holiday break, I saw Vince post about the UMA Dip program starting in January and I was IMMEDIATELY hooked. I was like if there was ever a time to try out dance classes in a structured, friendly, and nonjudgmental environment, this would be it. So, I decided to take the plunge and signed up.
Absolutely no regrets at all and by far one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. I’ve loved getting out of my comfort zone and having new experiences and this program was perfect for that. The people at UMA are all so welcoming and the close-knit community is what I’m looking forward to getting to know as I pursue my journey of dance. I’m very excited to immerse myself in all the different types of dance classes and enjoy the process of becoming a competent (and hopefully decent) dancer
Shoutout to Ricky and Helen for being amazing dance instructors and providing knowledge, expert instruction, and patience while making it fun and engaging. Shout to Kayla for coordinating the program and keeping us updated on everything happening each week. Lastly, shoutout to Lilli for the expert insight and providing all the ins and outs of UMA during our 1v1 consultation as I navigate this new path of dancing.
If anyone has even a slight interest in taking this program, I would dive in and don’t hesitate. NO RAGRETS!
Why I was interested in learning how to dance:
I think dance is the sincerest form of self-expression that anyone can do. The creativity involved of getting in tune with your body, internalizing how a movement should feel, and expressing that through your own lens is pretty special and unique.
Check out Scott getting down in Ricky's Beginner Hip Hop class:
Thanks so much to Scott for sharing!
uma Journal: Andy
Dance: A Connection with Music
My dance journey began with an interest in breaking while in high school, but I didn’t get to learn much about it back then. Fast forward to college, and some friends and I ended up taking a hip-hop dance class for a semester—which I enjoyed a lot!
While in college, I developed a strong interest in music as a way to deal with depression. Listening to music helped me to relax and take my mind off of negative feelings, so I continued to listen. Eventually I took an interest in popping because I didn’t understand the musicality aspect of dance. This led me to explore this area on my own as a hobby over the years which helped me to bridge music and dance together.
After finishing college I found that the work related to my degree didn’t interest me. What continued to interest me was music, and, for the past year or so, I primarily focused on teaching myself to produce music. As a result of the pandemic and this aspiration, I developed a sedentary lifestyle and ended up out of shape. This helped me realize I needed to get moving again, which spurred my search for, specifically, breaking classes—thus leading to my discovery of UMA.
My first class was Movement Flow with Ron, and I remember my shins cramping up because I couldn’t move through a squat position comfortably—let alone many other positions. Ron’s classes guided me through exercises where I could build up the strength to hold and move through those positions, many of which I never thought I could do.
Jerry’s classes allowed me to pursue my high school breaking goals, and the cyphers in class are great since we get to freestyle and apply the moves we learned in class. Ricky’s classes always get me moving with the music in a variety of ways, which I value a lot as connecting with music and having fun are both very important to me. Emily’s classes have been great for learning popping fundamentals, as well as experimenting with fun concepts—such as puppeting. Tyger’s classes helped me to see things I don’t see, such as… myself in the mirror, but also aspects of dance like the depth of your steps or how you accentuate a specific movement.
Dancing has allowed me to push myself physically, mentally, and emotionally, and has given me and many others a space where we can connect with music and express ourselves. Thanks to all of the staff at UMA who help make this experience possible!
Thanks for sharing Andy!
Check out Andy getting down in Ron Wood's House Dance Ground Moves and Lofting class- Thursdays from 6-7pm!