Team Sassy went behind the scenes to discover exactly what makes dance studio Russ Dance Factory so special.
Not your typical studio, Russ Dance Factory is a longstanding space in the heart of Causeway Bay that truly emphasises dance. It boasts plenty of dance fitness classes and choreography-focused sessions, promising to be a lot of fun and get you moving and grooving. Team Sassy trialled a dance fitness class to get a real feel of the studio space and sat down with Founder Russ Fernandez to break down exactly what’s on offer, what you can expect and what makes this boutique dance space unique.
A Little Bit About Russ Dance Factory
Founder Russ Fernandez is a dancer with many years of experience under his belt; he’s a lead dance instructor here and opened the studio in April of 2014 (which means Russ Dance Factory’s 10-year anniversary is coming up soon!). Opening his own space allowed Russ to break free from the limitations of existing fitness studios and offer a unique dance fitness experience.
Russ Dance Factory was established on the basis of really having fun and focusing on dance itself. An all-women dance and fitness space, it’s backed by an international team of professionally trained dance instructors. In fact, each instructor here is actually auditioned by Russ and his team, who look for all-rounders with a high dance skill set; teachers who can conduct a fun and effective class, with a real eagerness to teach.
Russ feels that there’s a difference between “fitness dance” and “dance fitness” — the emphasis at Russ Dance Factory is on dance (but you’ll still get a workout in!). Classes typically run for about one hour and a half per session, and your dance instructor does all the choreography. They generally fall into three categories: dance fitness classes, HIIT classes and dance choreography classes.
I’m New To Dance — What Can I Expect From A Dance Fitness Class?
It’s all about trying and then figuring out how much dance ability you actually have. And you can continue to try different classes and instructors, so you can see which suits you best.
You can contact Russ Dance Factory via social media (like Instagram or Facebook) or by phone — that’s what most new customers tend to do! You’ll learn about the trial promotion and can let Russ Dance Factory know about your experience with dance.
Feel like you have zero experience? Russ says “zero experience” can really vary: maybe you’ve never attended a class but you have plenty of rhythm. Speak to the team at length and give them as much information as you can, so they can advise you and allocate you to a suitable class based on your needs, experience and skills. At the end of the day, if you come in, you will learn something! After all, you won’t keep fit by just thinking about it.
We tried out a 90-minute dance fitness class where we followed the dance instructor non-stop. It was a real break-a-sweat session! This is a great option for those of us who have only so much time in the week and are looking to get the most out of our 90 minutes. You could also opt for a dance choreography class, where more complex movements and steps are broken down and you’ll learn more about the genre and art form.
Russ Dance Factory is familiar with a range of different crowds, and they’re all ready to attend the intensive “break a sweat” dance fitness; RDFunky classes as well as the complex dance choreography classes. Trying is the first step to rediscovering yourself.
What Makes Russ Dance Factory Different?
Arguably, what makes Russ Dance Factory stand out is the studio’s approach to dance fitness. There’s a real appreciation for the art here and you’ll have a ton of fun in the dance-based workout-style RDFunky fitness sessions as well as getting a taste of K-pop, hip-hop, jazz funk and pop jazz to name a few. Dance classes here aren’t restricted to one single genre, so trendy choreography is fusion-inspired and totally fluid.
And location, location, location! Set in between Wan Chai and Causeway Bay, just around the corner of Times Square, it’s convenient; it’s super easy to drop in at any time of the day. Russ says many students and women even attend multiple classes in a day (there are close to 140 classes weekly, happening every half an hour), dancing through the afternoon and socialising with others.
When you’re literally dancing for hours, it doesn’t feel like a workout! And we love the opportunity to make new friends, as this is an all-women studio. The energy is super young and fresh, but welcoming to everyone.
Sassy Tip: First-timers can attend a trial class at just $110 and get access to a trial fee reimbursement and a discount on the first package you buy on your trial day.