You may have noticed that lately, a handful of dancers have been furiously showing off their moves at our socials. Or you may have noticed some people carefully watching who’s dancing with who and how they’re doing… Well, my friends, it’s that time of year again… TDS Competition time!!!

Ever since Sharon, Evan and the gang have announced that registration is open, I’ve seen many eligible dancers take to the floor and have been sizing up their potential dance partners. I’ve also had a number of said dancers approach me for advice and my thoughts about the yearly ‘Salsa-Mania’ main event. So whether you were witness to last years’ festivities or a competition virgin who’s been thinking about competing, here’s a little bit of advice from someone who’s lived it…

The Annual TDS Competition takes place every year, usually between April – June and feature only TDS students, helpers and assistants competing for some pretty awesome prizes! There are two rounds, preliminaries and finals.

The Preliminaries (or Prelims) have up to 15 couples who all dance to the same song, in which they won’t know until the night of. This round is all about seeing who has the fundamentals…timing, leading, following. That night only 5 couples will go through to the finals!

The Finals have the top 5 couples from the Prelims dancing to a choreographed song of their choosing. This round is about the whole presentation: musicality, performance, costumes, etc! The top three winners get some pretty awesome prizes and have all gone on to serious TDS and salsa glory!

So, are you thinking about competing? Here are some pieces of advice from someone who’s been through it all:

-If you’re scared, dont’ worry! Everyone is scared about competing when they first sign up. I was pretty scared last year, but it goes away soon enough.
-If you’re gunning for first place, be prepared to work. Many dancers spend many nights and weekends practicing to perfection!
-Think you’re not a good enough dancer yet? You wouldn’t believe how getting ready for the competition amps up your dancing. Even if you don’t win first place, you’ll still walk away being noticed for how great your dancing has become.
-Pick a good partner that you click with and you know will put in the work. It’s just like doing a project in high school, if only one of you puts in the effort, it shows.
-Don’t worry if you don’t know how to perform, not only do you get a great group lesson with Tracie that teaches you the ins and outs of the competition, but you also get a really awesome private with Evan!

If there’s anything that I can stress is this: TDS is such a great and fun family environment that you probably won’t get too stressed out. All the teams look out for one another and keep the atmosphere light. So sign up and really have fun while enjoying the entire process!

Till then,
Stay Shining Salseros!