An Eastern Adventure with Ceroc
Author: Katie Bridges - Ceroc Asia
Date: 22nd August 2017
Categories: Education, International, Lesson
"Ceroc Asia has kept me guessing these past 9 years, and I know now that it always will. It has a life of it’s own, so who knows where we will expand to next. All we know for sure is that we are having great fun and awesome experiences in the process, now that a little piece of Asia is tapping its toe to the rhythm of Ceroc."
I had no idea, back when I started dancing Ceroc roughly 15 years ago on a winters night in Edinburgh, that my Ceroc journey would be such a big adventure. Far more than just learning a fun hobby, Ceroc ended up making the Far East my home.
For the past 9 years now, I have been living in Hong Kong, and started up Ceroc classes a few weeks after landing here. As a professional musician I had moved to Asia for my music career and knew how to sing for my supper, but had no idea how to dance for it - or run a business or create a Ceroc community. I had simply assumed that my pure dance addiction could continue in Hong Kong upon arrival, but after some research I discovered with dismay that Ceroc didn’t exist yet here. What else could be done apart from to start it up? Armed with my Ceroc Teacher Association qualification, completed a few weeks prior to leaving the UK, I felt inspired and wanted to share my love of Ceroc with anyone and everyone.
We began with a single Ceroc night in Hong Kong and now run two a week. Five years of Ceroc in Hong Kong led us to Paige, the perfect person to expand Ceroc into Singapore, and a couple of years ago Charmaine and Jeremy began in Malaysia. My biggest joy has been founding the Ceroc Pan Asia Champs in 2014, which has become our annual celebration of Ceroc in Asia, raising money for local children’s’ charities across the region. The feeling of watching a room full of different countries and cultures dancing and socializing together, united by their passion for Ceroc, is electric. Now the Champs (or CPAC) are on tour. Having taken place in Hong Kong and Singapore to date, we are excited to welcome CPAC to Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia on 21-23 October 2017. We are also so grateful to all the international talent who come over each year from UK and New Zealand to teach and support us every step of the way.
I find that teaching Ceroc brings slightly different challenges in Asia. First of all language – after experimenting with teaching in other languages, we settled on running all classes in English. In a way we are a British dance form and that’s part of the culture and the attraction of the community. We typically have smaller class sizes than in the UK, however, each country really does form a close-knit ‘Ceroc family’ with many extended members, and visitors tell us they love the vibe.
Another challenge is to keep fresh, as we are so far away from Ceroc HQ. One year we took a group of Ceroc Asia to the Jamfest weekender for a super-fix of Ceroc, happily maximizing on the fact that jetlag kept us dancing ‘til dawn each night. This also started building bridges between Ceroc UK and Asia teachers and if any teachers are visiting Asia we warmly encourage them to teach at any Ceroc night or workshop.
I feel quite proud to know that Ceroc Asia has also created many real life families too, with dancers meeting, marrying, and even bringing the next generation of baby dancers into the world. I’m an example of this too, after (my now husband) Tim, walked into our Hong Kong venue over 8 and a half years ago. Some of our female dancers have already claimed the first few dances with our 9 month old son, Cameron, so he better have inherited a dancing gene, or else we're in trouble!
All in all, what I have realized about Ceroc is that it’s far more than a dance, or a business - it’s a lifestyle. Some of the friendships we and others have formed out here are lifelong, and testament to the warm, approachable nature of both Ceroc and it’s Cerocers. I also can’t get enough of the fact that Ceroc can be danced to any music, and this helps to create a connection with anyone, of any cultural background or language base.
Ceroc Asia has kept me guessing these past 9 years, and I know now that it always will. It has a life of it’s own, so who knows where we will expand to next. All we know for sure is that we are having great fun and awesome experiences in the process, now that a little piece of Asia is tapping its toe to the rhythm of Ceroc.
Tempted to join CPAC? Make a holiday of a lifetime out of your next October weekender and visit Asia in the process: www.cerocasia.com
Passing through on business or leisure during the rest of the year? We would love you to join us on any of our dance floors:« All blogs