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Dancing Their Hearts Out

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By Erica Lee/ Sunday, June 11th, 2006 / New York Culture Center

I clearly remember my first visit to the Latin Dance group during the first rehearsal on April 23rd. They were in room 308 and I had immediately felt the energy and optimism in the air. Upon re-visiting this lively group again on Sunday June 11th, I once again felt the same energy and vitality. But this time, the energy and optimism had reached a whole new level. This time, the Latin Dance group was on the 5th floor, an appropriate floor, for the dancers had unbelievably high spirits and enthusiasm. The group was also given the 5th floor as it had grown tremendously since the first rehearsal. I rejoiced at its growth from a group of about 13 to a group of about 34.

On the very first day, the group members were sharing their strong determinations and hopes for the July 16th festival. They set mutual goals and nods of agreement and approval followed after the group's leader, Edgard Del Rosario, read each goal. That day, Edgard and co-leader Mariana Parma were teaching basic steps. At this fourth rehearsal, many sophisticated moves and steps were added to the routine. The Latin Dance group had indeed grown and progressed. In addition to being a spirited group, the Latin Dancers were also enthusiastic learners. With their shoes off and sleeves rolled up, they were all ready to dance. They came alive and became one in their rhythm as soon as the music came on. Stomping and clapping, they were having the time of their lives. They will surely "bring out the Buddha nature of everyone" at Lincoln Center, a goal set forth by the group.

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Journal 1 (April 23)
Journal 2 (May 14)
Journal 3 (May 21)
Journal 4 (June 11)
Journal 5 (June 18)
Journal 6 (June 25)
Journal 7 (July 1st)
July 8th & 9th
July 15th
July 16th

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April 23rd
May 14th
May 21st
June 11th
June 18th
June 25th (Teens)
June 25th
July 1st (Teens)
July 8th & 9th
July 15th