How did you get into dancing?

My mum would tell you that I’ve been dancing since the womb… my dad was a DJ so music is literally in my blood. I am from Dominica and grew up to what you now refer to as retro zouk but I was previously a salsa dancer and one day I stumbled across a kizomba room and the rest is history.

What projects are you currently working on?

I am one of the resident teachers of Kizomba at Nomad and have regular guest teacher invites at many of the top Kizomba nights in London. I will be teaching a #semba workshop in Sweden at the end of the month and have regular reverse leading and following workshops alongside Riquita.

We have a series of workshops coming up including body movement for both men and women in semba and kizomba. I am also part of the Love2Dance team who host monthly mixed music nights and we are planning to expand this during the summer!

What’s been the most memorable moment of your journey as a dancer so far?

Teaching at my 1st festival! Being invited to teach at Like London was one of the scariest and most rewarding experiences of my dance career. The most memorable experience as a dancer was being of the few non-Portuguese speaking women in a PALOP club feeling like a fish out of water but attending anyway because that was where the music was heavenly. A gentleman maybe in his 70’s asked to dance semba and he blew my mind! I still talk about him during my lessons.

What advice would you give to up & coming dancers looking at you for inspiration?

I will tell anyone who likes the way I dance that where I am now is a result of a journey! My body had muscle memory of dances like dancehall, Soca, salsa, hip hop and the process of isolating these natural tendencies to be able to dance Semba the way I do now… took time, patience. Be kind to yourself when learning semba/kizomba and enjoy the journey!

What can we expect from you for the rest of 2018?

So far this year I will be teaching a semba workshop in Sweden as previously mentioned as well as a festival in Ghana in December. Love2dance is every month where I host as well as teach Monthly guest teacher at Kizomba Sundays at O’Neil’s Leytonstone and weekly resident Semba and Kizomba teacher at Nomad every Wednesday.

I’m sure there will be more so follow me INSTA or FB Rashida Ironbutterflyforbes

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