Students’ ‘hips don’t lie’ at Salsa Dancing Seminar


Karlene Deng

Students followed Johnson’s lead in learning several salsa moves.

Kate McElhinney, Staff Writer

The MSMS Spanish Club hosted Salsa dancing lessons as a wellness seminar on Wednesday Jan. 29. in Shackleford Auditorium. Jermaine Johnson, who has toured with Marc Anthony, Shania Twain and Salt-n-Pepa, helped teach students how to salsa and partner dance.

Madison Huddleston, a junior who participated in the seminar, enjoyed learning the dances with her friends, and she shared her experience with salsa dancing.

“It was fun. It was basically just us learning different steps,” Huddleston said. “We had three basic steps that we learned, and then we learned how to do partner dances keeping in rhythm with the music.”

The students practiced the steps that they learned, and they worked on dancing faster or slower based on the tempo of the music. Afterwards, they were taught partner dances, with the same pace-based drills to follow.

Aja Ceesay, a Spanish Club officer, was excited that Johnson was able to travel to Mississippi to help teach the seminar, and she enjoyed the experience.

“In all honesty, this wouldn’t have been possible without Philnise. Her brother is a professional dancer who has been on tour with plenty of big names and was in Katy Perry music videos. I was ecstatic when he agreed to come out from California to do this,” Ceesay said. “I was just a little worried that people weren’t going to come, but there was more than I expected. I had tons of fun and I saw that everyone else was having fun.”

Taught mainly by students with the help of a few adults, the seminar provided an outlet for students to exercise with their friends while learning more about the Spanish culture. The Spanish Club has more events planned for the future, focused on sharing the Spanish culture with students who might not know a lot about it.