UVU’s Bachata Club hosts spooky Halloween masquerade for all to enjoy

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The Bachata Club, specializing in teaching and performing various Latin dances, put on a fundraising event to help raise money to support their efforts in spreading artistic culture around UVU.

Saturday Oct. 27 proved to be a great night for those who enjoy any type of dance. The event, a Halloween themed masquerade, lasted from 8-10:30 pm at Centre Stage on campus.

Vice President of Bachata club, Amy Bowman, noted that the money they collect through their fundraising events goes to paying instructors and choreographers to help members and students learn new dances for free.

“We have professional DJ’s and professional instructors donate their time… a lot of what we use the money for is to pay choreographers to come teach us,” she said.

Members of the club provided instruction for bachata, teaching students and attendees how to sway their hips, accurately count steps and move their feet without tumbling over their partners.

President of UVU’s Bachata club, Margarita Aguilar, stood at the center and exhibited her skill while showing other couples around her how to perform different bachata moves.

Member and performer, Isaac Ramos, taught to keep your partner close to your waist and roll their body into yours, leading them with your hips.

Other members jumped in, happily helping those without partners to teach them the dances. Although many members were already talented and experienced in bachata, they continued to impress that anyone could learn, and they were always willing to teach.

Bowman said, “We have a performing team, and we meet on Friday nights from 7 to 10 PM in the Student Life and Wellness Center gym. We do the ladies team for an hour, then we do the partner work team for an hour. Then, we have an hour where we just play music, we have our lights going, and we just social dance.”

Bowman was one of the four members of the club that stepped on stage later in the evening, exemplifying the members’ skill and passion for performing the different dances.

Between performances, attendees could enjoy snacks and a mix of both modern and classic Latin music with fast paced beats for everyone to enjoy.

BYU student and Economics major, Jordan Johnson, when asked about why he came out to the event, said, “to have fun and express myself. Also, just to get better and learn cool moves.”

As students swayed to lively music, other performers prepared to step on stage and perform a variety of dances.

Members of the Sway Dance Academy from Salt Lake City, Jacqueline Azero and Jefferson Bayona, performed a bachata dance routine, that they would later be performing in a dance competition in Florida.

The colorful and glittering costumes moved elegantly, as Bayona danced Azero around his hips, throwing her into the air and around the stage as she swayed to the beat. Their talent was inspiring for students to see, knowing that with practice, students could also become skilled in bachata.

UVU’s choreography club also performed that night, stepping away from the stage to make use of the open floor around the room. Members, Samantha Nelson, a junior and Modern Dance major, and LeGrande Lolo, a sophomore and Modern Dance major, performed a dance Lolo choreographed.

The dance centered around the two figures moving with one another in both graceful, yet jarring movements in a Halloween-esque performance with a soundtrack to match.

Lolo spoke about how the choreography club, between performances, also teaches new members how to perform different dances. Similarly to the Bachata club, the choreography club is always accepting new dancers and those willing and wanting to learn.

“We have so many different people just coming and learning. We say, even if you don’t want to perform, you can come and learn because you can use these steps on the dance floor with different social dances.” Bowman said.