About Gary Stephans
Renowned, International Ballroom Dance Instructor
Alexandria, VA Dance Lessons and Classes
Professional Ballroom Dance Instructor
Founder: Art of Ballroom Dance for Fun, Fitness & Romance
BALLROOM DANCE LESSONS IN ALEXANDRIA - GUARANTEED FUN!
People who dance do have more fun! And I have a unique way of helping men and women learn to dance. I GUARANTEE you'll have fun in my private ballroom dance lessons and group dance classes or wedding dance lessons in Alexandria, VA and Cincinnati, OH.
I fell in love with ballroom dancing when I was 10 years old, dancing with my parents, and started getting trained as an Arthur Murray dance instructor when I was 17 years old. I've been teaching American and International ballroom dancing, social dancing and Latin dance lessons in the U.S. Europe, Argentina, Brazil, Costa Rica, Mexico and Puerto Rico and on cruise ships for more than 40 years!
I purchased my first Arthur Murray franchised dance studio when I was 22 and went on to own and managed eight Arthur Murray dance studio franchises around the U.S. - winning many Top Franchise and Top Teacher awards from the company - and four independent dance studios, including the state-of-the-art Alliance Dance Institute and Ballroom Dance Teachers College (one of only 26 in the U.S.) at the Landmark Mall in Alexandria, VA.
STUDIED ALL FORMS OF DANCE
Wanting to know everything I could about movement and dance, I've studied all forms of dancing, including ballet, jazz, American Style and International Smooth and Rhythm dancing, Viennese Waltz, and Argentine Tango, from some of the best dance instructors in the world.
STAGE, TV AND FILM
I have danced in four Hollywood films, on stage and on many TV shows, produced more than a dozen record albums and was the Official Choreographer for three Miss Wisconsin Pageants hosted by Bert Parks.
I've also worked with celebrities including Olivia Newton John and John Travolta, and the Village People singing group.
In the late '70's I developed a new dance - the Foxxy - for the slow rock music that started to emerge in the '70s, and I introduced it on the Merv Griffin TV show in 1979. It's still a very popular dance for much of today's slow music and for a "First Dance" at weddings.
TEACHER, COACH, JUDGE, COMPETITOR
I've taught thousands of dance students ranging from total beginners to experts - some of whom went on to become U.S. Ballroom Dance Champions and World Champions.
I've trained and coached hundreds of professional dance instructors, been a championship competitive dancer, a certified competitive dance judge and a certified consultant to dance studio owners around the U.S. and internationally.
A "DIFFERENT KIND OF DANCE INSTRUCTOR"
Based on many years of training and teaching, my own teaching style is a little different from most dance instructors.
I focus on MOVEMENT and CONNECTION, rather than dance steps and patterns, and helping the Leader understand the importance of BEING the leader on the dance floor through body movement and connection with your dance partner and with the music, NOT by pushing your dance partner around or using your arms to lead.
Even if you think you have no rhythm or have two left feet, I can help you learn to dance. And I GUARANTEE you'll have FUN learning!
SPECIALIZING IN PRIVATE BALLROOM DANCE LESSONS AND LATIN DANCE LESSONS
Since selling my last dance studio in 2006, I have re-discovered the fun and joy of teaching private dance lessons, wedding dance lessons, and small, personalized group dance lessons in and around the Alexandria, VA and Cincinnati, OH areas. I teach in dance studios, or in your home, office or other facility.
WHY DO I TEACH BALLROOM DANCING?
I teach dancing because I love helping people become happier and healthier, more fit, less stressed, more confident, have sharper minds, experience more romance...and literally look and feel younger because they're discovering the fun of social dancing.
Many people (especially men), are intimidated about dancing. I love helping people overcome their fears and shyness about dancing - develop more self confidence...and have more fun socially because they're not afraid to dance anymore.
People who dance do have more fun.
AND...ballroom dance lessons can help keep the spark of romance alive.
As one relationship therapist in England wrote: "Today's ballroom and Latin dancing is the ultimate language of love."
WHEN I'M NOT DANCING...
OK. That's enough shop talk! I do have a life outside of dancing.
I'm an avid reader - especially books about American and European history, art, and biographies.
I'm also a photographer, specializing in dance photography and wedding photography.
I love traveling, and exploring Colonial American historical sites, Civil War battlefields, and historic sites around the world.
I love music, and I'm a member of The Alexandria Singers - "The Washington, DC Metro Area's Premiere Pops Chorus".
And I especially love my three wonderful children!