Dance instructor Felipe Gonzales and library technician Ms.Pacheco demonstrate the moves of bachata
for students who followed along during Study Hall. Photo by Zayra Salinas
The AHS library hosted a bachata lesson on Sept. 26 during Study Hall, taught by Felipe Gonzales of San Luis Obispo. The Bachata is a three-step, partner dance, which originated in the Dominican Republic around the 1960s and has many features in common with Salsa and Tango. It is popular all over the world with different variations. The dance style has been performed competitively and for recreational purposes.
To begin the lesson, students watched Gonzales and copied basic steps before partnering and practicing the dance moves on their own. The instructor then made his way around the room to provide individual guidance. Overall, Gonzales was very pleased with the students’ performance, because they successfully learned the eight moves of the dance in one lesson, faster than the students he recently taught at Cal Poly Salsa Club, where he has volunteered for the last five years.
Students were excited about the experience as well. “The Bachata was a very fun activity to participate in! The dance style is very interesting and vivacious,” said sophomore Christina Wilson. She and other students look forward to other special activities the school plans to host in the near future.
Special events, like the Bachata lesson, are organized by Ms. Pacheco, who works in the AHS library. In October, students will have the option to participate sewing lessons, where they will learn to make their own trick-or-treat bags. The library will also have a sewing machine out for use for students who want to create their own costumes. Students must bring their own thread and fabric. The sewing machine will be available during all breaks and after school during the month of October. The library will also have a Photo Booth available on Halloween and will give out candy to anyone who takes a picture in the booth and is in a costume.
The Bachata lesson has become an annual event due to its popularity. The first lesson was held in 2017, and thanks to positive student feedback, it was hosted once again this year. Hopefully, AHS will continue to teach Bachata lessons each year.