Let’s Dance wants to bring ballroom dancing to Blount

Watching the TV show “Dancing With the Stars” is entertaining but dancing like a star is far better.

Professional dancers Beth Cofer and Chris Rose are dancing with the locals in Blount County. The two opened a ballroom dance studio at the end of October called Let’s Dance, 1605 East Broadway Ave.

Rose said his studio is about more than just learning to dance. “The people who come here are looking for a little spice in their life.”

The studio combines private lessons with group classes and social events. Curious learners can take advantage of a low-cost introductory package, which includes two private lessons, a group class and a Friday night party for $35.

Let’s Dance offers trial classes but is a membership-based business. “It’s way better than going to a gym,” Rose said.

The studio teaches ballroom dances like Waltz, Tango, Cha-Cha, Swing as well as country dances like the Two-Step. Rose has expertise in theater arts, which is a ballroom derivative of ballet with an emphasis on lifts.

The couple say dancing is an alternative to traditional exercise and it is also safer. Cofer said not only do instructors pace students based on capability but their “sprung dance floor” cushions joints.

Rose said, “When people with physical ailments dance, it gets them moving so they feel better.” They say dancing is an effective form of therapy because is fun and engaging.

The dance studio caters to adults, both couples and singles. Cofer said members have the opportunity to compete and participate in out-of-studio social functions. She said the Destination Night Out events offer members a chance to dance in a “real setting.”

Gift certificates for lessons are available for Christmas gifts. In fact, the dancers said area businesses and churches are booking holiday parties at the studio where attendees can enjoy a group class.

Let’s Dance owners say they are the only ballroom dance studio in Blount County. Cofer said they were offered a dance studio franchise but chose to open their own studio so they could customize services specifically for Blount County customers.

Both performers have been teaching ballroom since 1995; Cofer in Knoxville and Rose in Nashville. Before teaching ballroom, Cofer was a trained dancer in ballet, tap, jazz and modern. She was also on her college dance team.

Rose was a competition country western dancer in Nashville. Along with dancing, he was also a semi-pro football player.

The owners say they both have extensive backgrounds in managing studios, teaching students of all skill levels and competing as professional dancers, skills they are putting to work now that they have their own business. Both instructors were named “Top Teacher” at their respective schools in Knoxville and Nashville.

The studio is open from 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday and 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. on Saturdays. Weeknight group classes begin at 7 p.m. To schedule an appointment or make a reservation for classes, call 865-982-8082. More information is available on their website: www.letsdancetn.com.

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