Going Out – Club Night vs. Outing vs. Social
Club Night versus Outing versus Social – what’s the difference? If you want to go out and practice your dancing or just get your groove on, they are all great options. But there are subtle differences between them. Which one should you try? Here is a guide to help you understand the differences and similarities between club nights, outings and socials. .
A club night is a Latin dance night hosted by a nightclub (that might not necessarily be a Latin themed night club). Club Nights generally have names like “Tropical Thursdays” or “Bachata Nites” or “Salsa Fridays”. These nights are hosted by the nightclub and often offer a free class (included in the price of cover at the door) and sometimes feature live music in addition to a DJ that specializes in Latin music.
The free class provided by a nightclub will usually taught by the same instructor or a rotating group of instructors each week. Check the web-site of the club to see a schedule of who is teaching on what night and the theme of their Latin nights (some clubs have more than one Latin night). Note that nights that state a specific type of dance in the title (like Salsa, Bachata or Kizomba) will feature mostly that type of music on that night, with a small mix of other Latin music types (which can include Merengue, Reggaeton and Kuduro).
Club nights tend to be more “upscale” than the other types of social nights, with the crowd being a mix of dancers and non-dancers alike. So people tend to dress up a little bit more. In Toronto, even Club Nights are fairly casual but it does depend on the city. When I was in Los Angeles, everyone was very dressed up.
“Outings” or “Parties”
An Outing (sometimes called a Party) is when a dance studio or company hosts a Latin night at a nightclub or special event venue. The host studio will host a free lesson (some studios provide one “all levels” lesson, some provide a beginner and intermediate lesson to cater to varying skill levels), which is included in the price of cover. Checking a studio’s website and special event listings will tell you what time the lesson is and if there is one or two lessons.
While these events are open to the public, Outings are mainly promoted to and attended by the students from the host studio and their friends. Dance studios host Outings in order to encourage their students to mix and mingle with fellow students from other classes and levels to practice their social dancing in a club environment but without the pressure of a formal “Club Night”.
Outings are a great way for new dancers to check out a dance studio’s style and community. Usually you can meet the Director or a senior level dance instructor from the host studio at the Outing and talk to them about their studio if you’re interested in taking lessons from them.
Outings are more casual that Club Nights (although people do get dressed up for Outings, especially if it’s a special event like a themed Party for Valentine’s Day or Hallowe’en) and, from time to time, can also feature performances of student, amateur and pro dance teams from the host studio.
A Social is when a dance studio or company hosts a practice session in a dance studio. A Social is the most casual of all three social events and is a true practice session in that no classes or instruction is provided at the event.
Socials are also open to the public and are mostly attended by dancers from the host studio or company, but some long-standing and popular Socials are attended by dancers from many different studios and can be a good place to meet dancers from other studios, especially dancers from higher levels who have more social dancing experience.
Unsure what to wear when out dancing? Check out the article to find out both how to be comfortable and what to expect.
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