Learning to Move to the Rhythm

Drinks at a local bar, catching the latest blockbuster, or checking out a new band?though the scene, actors and music change, sometimes the nightlife in Murfreesboro can feel a bit repetitive. On those nights, it’s up to you to make your own fun.

With the explosion of dance shows like ABC’s “Dancing With The Stars,” FOX’s “So You Think You Can Dance” and MTV’s “America’s Best Dance Crew,” interest in dance has boomed in recent years, spurring people to leave their couches in favor of a night out at some of Murfreesboro’s local dance studios.

“The hardest part for a lot of people is just walking in the door. You see people who love it, they watch it on TV, and they wouldn’t miss ?Dancing With the Stars.’ If you want it, do it,” Dance World owner Nancy Brown said.

Located on Memorial Boulevard next to the Murfreesboro Athletic Club, Dance World offers private and group lessons in a bevy of forms and styles, as well as weekly social dances every Friday.

“We teach all the smooth dances, all the Latin dances, all the swing dances,” Brown said. While the studio does offer a junior’s ballroom dance class, it caters specifically to adults and those serious about learning a new form of dance.

“We have something to offer to those who want to do competition and are very, very serious about dance as well as to those who aren’t. We can cater to everyone,” Brown said.

For those interested in more casual lessons with a focus on meeting new people, The Vine on West Vine Street is now offering lessons followed by an open dance every Wednesday night, with a social dance every fourth Saturday of the month. This month, the theme is Super Soul Saturday, featuring The Fire House Band, a Motown group.

“We have instructors on the floors, so after the lesson, you’re still able to talk to people who can help you learn. Every session gets a little harder, you’re learning more every time,” The Vine owner Sharon Petty said. At the beginning of each month, The Vine instructors begin teaching a new style.

“It just seemed like with ?Dancing With The Stars,’ everyone was really enjoying dancing and people were trying to learn. We’re doing it more of a social club. . . . It’s really just for people to get together and enjoy each other’s company,” Petty said.

Beyond the entertainment and social aspects of dance, both Brown and Petty agree that it can be outstanding for your health?not only physically but mentally as well.

“It’s really good for exercise. Of course you’re going to lose weight, get your body fitter, but the main thing is, it just clears your mind. I forget about all my problems when I’m dancing,” Petty said.

“If it wasn’t for having dancing in my life, I don’t know if I’d of survived everything that’s happened to me. When you’re dancing, your brain is clear, you’re happy, and it’s fun. You’re thinking about your body and what you’re doing,” Brown said.

Be it for health reasons or for sheer entertainment, Murfreesboro’s growing dance scene offers something for everyone. Be it the casual enthusiast or those serious about learning new moves, the local dance centers offer both a way to meet new people and keep in shape.

So next time the box office offerings seem a bit stale or there’s a shortage of good bands to check out, consider giving dance a try. You may just learn something.


Dance World

Location: Memorial Blvd. next to MAC, 983-2202

When: Social dances on weekends; group and private lessons daily

Price: $25 per couple, Saturday class/ dance; $12 per person, group class

The Vine

Location: West Vine Street, 890-3630

When: Wednesday Nights?lessons followed by open dance

Price: $5 per person per night


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