A dance class can teach anyone to move with grace through bee attacks, while getting served in front of a blind date, or during mega-prom. Ready your repertoire for any occasion with today's Groupon: for $45, you get any six dance or fitness classes at The Tango Room Dance Center in Sherman Oaks (up to a $90 value).
Classes are as varied and numerous as the cheese selection in a Wisconsin grocery store. Try the titular tango to spicy up every step, the salsa to develop flirty musicality and timing, or shimmylicious belly dancing to tone out a sinuous, lithe body. Or sample wild foreign spices from abroad such as Bujinkan, the Japanese martial art of ninjas, or Exotifit, a mixture of strange charms and moves collected from the shores of India, Brazil, and Hawaii, blended with contemporary hip-hop and pole dancing. Classes are offered at multiple times every day of the week; check the calendar to find one that fits your schedule like a snug, bright-red dancing heel. Only the Sunday yoga class is off limits to newcomers.
Helmed by Angel Echeverria, considered by some to be the godfather of tango in Los Angeles, the center aims to help every student discover the same self-confidence Echeverria found in the famed tango clubs of Argentina. Sherman Oaks residents often spot Echeverria strutting down the road to work, joined at the hip with fellow teacher and ballet dancer Julie Friedgen. Together, their love for dance becomes a contagious force, spiking everyone in the immediate vicinity with a passion for dance and dramatically slapping their estranged lovers in a crowded restaurant.
The Tango Room has been featured in the Los Angeles Times:
- To step onto the dance floor at the Tango Room Dance Center in Sherman Oaks is to experience a little bit of Argentine night life. – Nicole Santa Cruz, Los Angeles Times
The Tango Room Dance Center
As a child in Buenos Aires, Angel Echeverria would sit on the porch of his family home and watch his aunt and uncle dance the tango. Music often spilled into the streets of his neighborhood, where many tango musicians lived. By the time he was a teenager in the early 1960s, Angel began studying the tango himself, and nearly 50 years later he founded The Tango Room Dance Center with Julie Friedgen. Like Angel, Julie grew up watching her parents’ Argentine friends dance tango at parties, and eventually became a ballet and flamenco dancer. Though she didn’t begin learning the tango until 13 years ago, once she started she immediately knew it was the dance to which she would devote the rest of her life.
Not surprisingly, The Tango Room is dedicated to the Argentine style of dance; many of the instructors hail from Argentina and lead classes in traditional, contemporary, waltz, and milonga variations. On Saturday nights the school transforms into El Encuentro—which translates to “the encounter”—a fast-paced dance party modeled after the tango clubs of Buenos Aires. Beyond tango, the school also hosts classes in salsa, belly dance, and R & B line dancing as well as Zumba and bujinkan, a Japanese martial art.