Christmas has always been synonymous with midnight mass, carols, feasting and gifts. But this year, the festival has gone one step further. Even as the gymkhanas in the city bring alive the tradition of jive and ballroom dancing like every year, dance clubs and academies are also hosting special social dance evenings during the festival.
At Shiro in Worli, Christmas night will be a Latino black-tie affair. While Shiro regularly hosts a salsa night called Latin Twist, this Wednesday, it will reinvent the dancing night with a mix of salsa and rock-and-roll.
Mary Lobo, the host of Latin Twist, said, “Our nights are usually strictly salsa nights. This Wednesday, on the occasion of Christmas, we have asked men to dress up in formals fitted with a black tie and the women, in gowns. Our DJ, Derek Spencer, will be playing some peppy rock-and-roll and even cha cha tracks. But a lot of our favourite Latin tracks will be played, as always, for our salsa aficionados. The night will be a complete, festive affair with a lot of dancing.”
The Tanz Verden Ballroom International, a ballroom academy, recently hosted its Christmas special at its Bandra centre to ring in the festivities. “Ballroom dancing during Christmas is an age-old tradition. We had a Christmas-themed evening where our students performed rumba and samba. We also had a jive workshop for the public. We had our dancers dressed in red, white and green to live up to the festive spirit. The point is to revive traditions that happen only in certain clubs and make it public so that dance enthusiasts all over can participate and enjoy,” said Reesha Dhulap, instructor at the academy.
F Bar in Lower Parel too has a salsa night planned on Monday evening. Dancers will be decked up in red and white.
Gymkhanas across the city, including the Catholic, Bandra, Khar and Willingdon Catholic have been hosting social nights for several years on Christmas.
Percival Aguiar, joint general secretary of the Willingdon Catholic Gymkhana in Santa Cruz, said, “We have a band playing on Christmas and they will be doling out jive, foxtrot and waltz tracks for the dancers. The party will start at 8pm and go on till midnight. We will have everyone coming in formals like tuxedos, blazers and gowns. It’s about a lot of camaraderie and joy through partner dancing.”
Sion’s Everard Nagar has also been hosting social dances every Christmas. Gareth Saldanha, one of the organisers, said, “It is one of the best social dancing parties that happen every Christmas. We have people from all over who get together and dance. We play a lot of jive, foxtrot and even some latest music. It cuts across age groups.”
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At Shiro in Worli, Christmas night will be a Latino black-tie affair. F Bar in Lower Parel too has a salsa night planned tonight. Dancers will be decked up in red and white. Moreover, gymkhanas across the city, including the Catholic, Bandra, Khar and Willingdon Catholic have been hosting social nights for several years on Christmas.