I suck at dancing. I’ll be the first (and sadly, probably not the last) to put that out there. I have neither grace nor attitude when it comes to making my body move to the beat. This one time waaaay back when, I remember being forced into some dance class by a friend (or should that be “friend”) and even though I hid all the way at the back in my own little corner of shame, my awful moves still prompted the instructor to pull me up to the front, where I was totally dance-shamed.
So when Rach asked me to try out a dance class by hip-hop instructor, Hilary Thompson, I didn’t exaaaactly jump at the opportunity. Luckily, I was able to grab a friend to come suffer the ordeal with me!
We went for the Tuesday class, which was conveniently held at Red Shoe Dance on Arbuthnot Road. Stepping into the studio, I was transported back to memories of me and my girlfriends vegging out over dance movies like Centre Stage and Step Up (1, 2 and 3), wishing I could dance like the characters on the big screen.
Hilary was incredibly friendly and super approachable; she kindly informed us that among the classes she teaches each week, this was the Advanced Level class. Haha – what luck.
Our class size that day was about ten – a good sized group, enough for everyone to see themselves in the mirror and to chat and laugh during class. It was also intimate enough for Hilary to answer any questions or to reteach any steps that needed clarification throughout dance class.
The song of the day was Justin Bieber’s (because no one is cooler than the Biebster) “Beauty and a Beat”. And just in case you’ve never had a dance class, the warm-up in the first five minutes is just about the easiest part. After that, Hilary went through the routine in chunks, to ease everyone into the song and for us to familiarise ourselves with the moves.
Even after a good half hour of learning the steps and doing them over and over again, there were parts of the class where I felt like I was either doing the chicken dance, or probably looking like I was being electrocuted. Regardless of that, just being in the studio, bopping to JBiebs in the background was so much fun! Everyone was laughing the entire time, and Hilary was just incredible to watch. It was clear she loved to dance, and even someone like me (the self-proclaimed dance loser) was slowly infected by her dancing awesome-ness.
After forty-five minutes of learning and practising the moves, we finally all rocked out the entire sequence together. It felt incredibly rewarding to just let loose and dance like there’s no one watching. And it was definitely a total body workout, as we didn’t let up the pace for the entire hour!
So with it being the new year and all, this is the perfect time to try something completely out of your comfort zone! Even if you think you can’t dance (i.e. me), Hilary’s class is a great way to jump around, laugh your butt off and let off some steam! I know I’m definitely going to get a couple of my girlfriends together to try another class soon!
Check out Hilary’s dance class in action in the vid on our Facebook Page here!
Hilary’s classes are:
- Mondays, 6pm and Thursdays, 7pm at Trinity Dance Studio, 13/F The Pemberton, 22-26 Bonham Strand, Sheung Wan, Hong Kong
- Tuesdays, 7.30pm at Red Shoe Dance, Unit 3A, 3/F Arbuthnot House, 10 Arbuthnot Road, Central, Hong Kong
- Wednesdays, 6pm at Stanley, Stanley Municiple Services Building, 6 Stanley Market Road, Stanley, Hong Kong
Classes cost $150 at Trinity and $200 at Red Shoe Dance or Stanley. Packages and private classes are available on request, contact Hilary on 9459 7496 or email [email protected]