Bournemouth’s booming dance scene. Time to bust some moves

Delegates coming to Bournemouth are often out and about week nights in the town, looking for some social action that’s a little bit different from the usual couple of drinks and dinner. So instead of the usual hospitality, why not book them in for some proper partner dancing with the professionals. Or organise your own dinner dance, with a bit of teaching thrown in.

You name it, we’ve got it all going on here in Bournemouth, every night of the week, with drop-in classes and freestyle sessions to suit every taste and every age.

What’s your style?

Salsa Explosion: Salsa has been a big part of the dance scene in Bournemouth for more than 24 years, since Cuban-born Enrique Perez brought the vibrant moves of his beloved home country to dance floors across the town. He’s been running regular weekly classes and freestyle events at Royal Exeter Hotel’s Bar So for 12 years and offers the full range of Cuban and Latin styles in venues across the town. Enrique, with guest teacher Moe Flex and a team of professional dancers and DJs bring authenticity and skill to the popular classes at Bar So, Canvas, Chic, The Cabin and Cameron.

 “I want people to love Salsa, to feel the music and the streets of Cuba as they dance and most of all to enjoy themselves,” says Enrique. “The Bournemouth scene is incredibly lively and not at all intimidating. My teachers are supportive, gifted and friendly which is why people keep coming back. And we’re always delighted when visiting business people and conference delegates drop in to give it a go.”

Pavilion Dance South West. The dance hub for Bournemouth presenting a year-round programme of innovative and inspiring dance performances, live ballet screenings and arts exhibitions in an intimate, state-of-the-art, 200-seat theatre and gallery space.

“Our dance studios hold busy drop-in classes all year round for street, African, 1940s social dancing and more to suit all ages and abilities. Everyone’s welcome and we’re always delighted when anyone new in town decides to come along and join in” says PDSW’s Emilie Barton.

Soul on the Sea: monthly on Saturday nights at Key West on the pier – Motown, Northern Soul, Rockabilly, Ska, Reggae and more.

Jive ‘n’ Kicking: modern jive at Bournemouth Pavilion and venues in Ferndown and Wimborne.

Dance weekenders at the Royal Bath, Mayfair and Carrington House hotels. Three days and nights of workshops, parties and live music – jazz, blues, Latin, swing, jive, line dancing and more.

Shake ‘n’ Stir vintage weekend in June at Fishermans Walk, Southbourne. Cars, clothing, bands and an open air dance floor.


Check out the competition 


Business Come Dancing.

Bournemouth’s answer to Strictly. Ten professional teachers will take ten business people on a dance journey, culminating in a performance in front of a live audience at a glamorous gala evening and competition at the Pavilion Ballroom. All proceeds raised go towards the Mayor of Bournemouth’s Charity Appeal Fund. Tickets for the December event can be purchased through the Pavilion Dance South West Box Office.

UK Dance Championships and Exhibition. Every year in January at Bournemouth International Centre. An annual event where the dance world’s rising stars and professional Latin and Ballroom couples compete for top national prizes. Watch the action and visit the UK Dance Shopping Mall with its lavish display of couture Latin and Ballroom dancewear and accessories.


Guest Blogger: Helen Fisher


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