Four women work to keep Latin dance alive in Fayetteville

·2 min read

After the dance studio that brought them together closed, four women decided they wanted to teach and keep dance alive in the Fayetteville area.

Fayetteville Latin Dance recently opened its brick-and-mortar studio at 809 Hope Mills Road, after offering its dance classes out of a yoga studio between August 2020 to August 2021.

Ashley Goode and the other three owners, Loretta Ramsingh, Jennifer Pannell and Josina Hill felt it was their position to continue spreading the art of dance after Baile Con Sazón studio, where they all connected, closed.

"We all just banded together and was like 'this is something we love,'" Goode said. "Each person has their own personal reason as to why we didn't want it to die. And we know the joy that it brought us and so we wanted to continue to bring that same joy to other people because it's truly an outlet. Dance heals and so we want it to continue to provide that to our community around here.

Fayetteville Latin Dance owners (left to right) Josina Hill, Jennifer Pannell, Loretta Ramsingh and Ashley Goode.
Fayetteville Latin Dance owners (left to right) Josina Hill, Jennifer Pannell, Loretta Ramsingh and Ashley Goode.

One of the owners, Goode, said having their own studio will help expand their classes.

"For the first three months, we're going to have a set schedule for our studio and then the next three months we plan to offer more classes as well as workshops and events," she said. "What we're going to do in the future is to try to get a 501(c)3 (non-profit status) and be able to partner with the schools so we can host kids from school and give them free classes as well."

'Icon in the community:' Fayetteville mourns ballroom dancer, instructor Roland Bersch Jr.

Arts coverage in Cumberland county: Arts Council to hold 'LatinXhibit' in honor of Hispanic Heritage Month

As three of the owners are veterans, Goode said they strongly care about the military community.

"Something that we would like to as part of this dance initiative is offer free classes to wounded soldiers," she said. "By doing that and having our own space, we can kind of just really expand on what we like to do and often also bring in more styles of dancing."

Support local journalism with a subscription to The Fayetteville Observer. Click the "subscribe'' link at the top of this article.

The grand opening of the studio was Jan. 5.

The studio offers private lessons along with open classes. Classes are $15 and can range higher depending on the class package. For more information and to sign up for classes, visit the studio's website.

Goode said she doesn't think there is much to do in the Fayetteville area. The owners want to add to the entertainment for adults and children, she said.

"I actually feel like we need more outlets," she said. "Not just the kids but the adults as well. There's very limited things to do here and being able to provide a service to people to have an outlet, provide people (an outlet) that they can relate to culturally is also a big thing."

Staff writer Akira Kyles can be reached at akyles@gannett.com.

This article originally appeared on The Fayetteville Observer: Fayetteville women aim to make Latin dance thrive

Our goal is to create a safe and engaging place for users to connect over interests and passions. In order to improve our community experience, we are temporarily suspending article commenting