Instructors

Our teachers are dedicated to carrying out our mission

“Creating Cultural Unity Through Music & Dance”

Christian & Dana Camarena

 

Dana’s mom was a professional Belly dancer and Dana spent a good portion of her childhood, dancing & being toted around to various performances & workshops all over the country. Those experiences gave her exposure at an early age to many different types of music, cultures & languages which have greatly influenced her style both on and off the dance floor. Her parents enrolled her in Ballet, Tap, & Jazz classes at the age of 9 where she studied for 6 years. Throughout her high school years she took a detour from dancing and following her mother around the country, and spent most of her time on horseback, training, competing and teaching. In 1999, she went on what was supposed to be a short 1 month study abroad program in Guadalajara Mexico. That one month turned into six months, which was followed by many, many trips back & forth which inevitably changed her life forever. She was only in Guadalajara for about one week when she took her first Salsa lesson, and that was the start of what has become a lifelong study of Salsa & other Latin contemporary & folkloric dances.

Christian was born and raised in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico & brought up in a musical household & lifestyle which gave him a broad understanding of musicality in Latin rhythms. His dad plays the piano and guitar, and Christian plays the Congas & small percussions.  Puerto Vallarta’s big affluence of Cuban musicians & dancers gave Christian his early passion for Afro-Cuban rhythms and later Salsa. Working in the hotel entertainment industry for years, Christian gained a wide experience as a performer working in many resorts in Puerto Vallarta & Cancun & learning from many recognized instructors in Mexico. Christian’s passion for Salsa took off when he met Dana in 2003.

The two met in Mexico in 2003, and were married in 2004. Their combined experience in music & dance has proved to be a wonderful resource for anyone wanting to learn. They have collectively studied with some of the best instructors in the world & have dedicated themselves to continuing their dance education by traveling all over the Country and to places as far away as Spain, Puerto Rico, Mexico, U.K.,  Portugal & Cuba to search out the best instructors.  They have studied many of the Latin contemporary & folkloric dances, Kizomba, Semba, Belly Dance & flamenco (and a bit of Texas Two step :-).    This cross training has enabled them to bring a fresh perspective & authenticity to their classes.  They teach & perform LA Salsa, Casino & all Cuban contemporary genres, Kizomba, Semba,  Bachata, Cumbia, & Flamenco.   Aside from teaching regular local classes, they have taught & performed internationally  & are recognized for their creative performances, high energy classes, & concise teaching methods.

Christian & Dana are both are motivated by a passionate dream to bring high quality & truthful instruction with a little cultural awareness to Eastern Washington.

“D&C fill their schedules with amazing offerings and are incredibly knowledgeable.  I will say that Dana tends to be more serious while Christian keeps us laughing and they both remind the guys and girls separately of what our jobs are in the dance partnership. They make a team, and I always learn from both of them.” (posting from Yelp from one of Christian & Dana’s students)
 
“The environment is clean and professional, the instructors are great and everyone gets individual attention. All the other people in the class were super friendly – males, females, experienced, and newbies. The lessons are very affordable. I also found that by practicing the basic bachata moves I leaned here, I was able to seriously improve my other dance moves in the club.. Hiphop, cumbia, etc.The class is great, the other students are great, and it built a good amount of confidence to actually figure some moves out. Cant recommend it enough, Id take more than one class at a time if only there were more hours in the day. “(posting from Yelp from one of Christian & Dana’s students)

Becky Poynter-Flamenco

Becky has been dancing one form or another most of her life. In Sunnyside, she began ballet, jazz and tap at age 4, continuing through age 13. She performed with dance team through high school and resumed ballet lessons for a number of years in her early 20’s.
She first saw flamenco performed in a small café in Madrid in 1978. “I never forgot the experience of the profound human emotion and complex rhythms that were vibrating throughout the small space.”
In 2000, she began flamenco lessons locally with Jacqueline Cable (Maximina). Becky has also studied with Rubina Carmona in Seattle.and Laura Onizuka in Portland. She’s also taken workshops with Oscar Nieto, Maria Bermudez and Ricardo Lopez.
 
“Practicing flamenco is challenging. I find it mentally and physically stimulating and I embrace the platform it provides for personal expression and improvisation. I especially enjoy tango rhythms and the music; it’s uplifting and playful.” 

Linzi Harris- Sexy Sculpt

There aren’t really words to describe a class with Linzi, you just have to come try one & see for yourself!! She is full of good positive energy & is a beautiful dancer. She has a way of making her students feel comfortable while allowing their inner diva to shine through.

 
“Linzi is an amazing and animated teacher that you can’t help but have fun. She brings new material every week and you get an incredible workout that keeps bringing you back for more! Sexy sculpt rocks!!” (from one of Linzi’s dedicated students)
 

 Kathy Dee-Argentine Tango

I have studied Argentine Tango since 2006 in the Central Coast of California until I moved to Richland in November.. I was immediately attracted to this dance because its focus is the connection between the follower and leader. It is a conversation between two people on the dance floor. The communication is non-verbal, given through movement and intension. It is a led dance which is free to be interpreted by the leader with all the creativity he or she puts into it.

I am a certified tango instructor in the DVIDA system by Christy Cote and George Garcia. It is based on the 8 count Basico which is taught in the first lesson. I have studied under many teachers, most who are from Argentina. I’ve traveled to Buenos Aires several times dancing my way through the city.

I focus on Salon Style Tango with emphasis on precision, smoothness and elegant dance lines. It is more of an open embrace which includes all the basic tango steps and figures plus sacadas, giros and boleos.

I was a master instructor for the Red Cross for 25 years giving classes to instructors on the art of teaching and also their core curriculum in a variety of subjects.

I look forward to sharing this wonderful dance and possibly creating our own Tango community here in the Pacific Northwest.