If you’re here, you probably want to know more about Kizomba Harmony. So let’s start with who we are!
That’s us (Monica Kay and Billy) in the pic above! We look good don’t we? Who are we kidding, of course we do! But it’s not really about us, is it? Of course not, it’s about YOU!
Do you want to learn to dance, or level up your current dance ability?
If you’re here, you probably do, and you’re clearly a wise and discerning lady or gent, because Kizomba Harmony can help! You are in for a treat, and you’re in the right place, keep reading!
So what are your dance goals?
- Do you want to be that guy or girl that everyone wants to dance with?
- Do you want to perform onstage, or compete?
- Or do you just want to get on the dance floor ASAP and have a great time?
No matter your goals, Kizomba Harmony is uniquely qualified to help you get there! We know you have more questions, so we’ve tried to answer them pre-emptively below. Yup, we’re helpful like that.
Why should I learn from Kizomba Harmony?
We’re glad you asked!
Well, in short, we’re easily among the most highly trained, versatile, and effective Kizomba/Semba teachers in the industry! We have traveled all over the world to teach and train with the world’s top talents, and still do. In fact, we’ve taught or performed in 10 countries (and counting), and have logged hundreds upon hundreds of hours IN-DEPTH training with over 30 world-class instructors in Kizomba, Semba, Tarraxinha, African Body Movement, Soukous, Urban Kiz/2.0/”French Style” Kizomba and other African rhythms. In addition, we placed as International Finalists (top ten couples in the world!) at the 2016 edition of Africadancar, the most prestigious Kizomba competition in the world, having the honor of being only the second USA couple to ever do so! Kinda cool eh? We think so.
Why should I care about the training and background of my dance instructors?
Would you be comfortable being operated on by a doctor who isn’t trained properly? Would you be fine with being represented in court by someone who learned how to advocate on YouTube? Well, since the Kizomba dance community isn’t regulated (yet), it’s easy for instructors to come to a few workshops, check out YouTube, learn a few moves or tricks, and then proclaim themselves instructors with minimal training and proceed to take your money while offering an inferior product and demonstrating little commitment to invest in their training.
We have worked with numerous students to help them “unlearn” what they have learned from unscrupulous and untrained “instructors” and “relearn” the proper foundation and technique. As instructors we are providing YOU with a service, and you have every right to inquire as to our training and experience, and we encourage you to do so with any instructor with whom you are considering taking lessons. We invest heavily in teacher training and private instruction with the world elite talents, and any instructor worth long-term investment should be able to demonstrate the same. Rest assured that you will not find instructors more dedicated than Kizomba Harmony to investing in the necessary training to offer a quality product to our students. Learning from Kizomba Harmony means you will never have to waste time and money “unlearning” what you have learned from us.
What is Kizomba Harmony’s mission?
Our mission is to train the best and most versatile dancers around with awesome attitudes to match, organize high quality events, and therein help grow a thriving community that will stand the test of time! We strive to build a high quality diverse yet unified Kizomba scene in Houston and beyond, a community where the history, culture, roots and foundation of Kizomba/Semba are respected, but where people also appreciate “new styles” based on that strong foundation. You can read more about our philosophy and vision by checking out the Kizomba Harmony Manifesto!
What does that mean for ME?
We are world-class professionals with an international reputation, but simply listing our training and accomplishments doesn’t really spell out how it benefits YOU does it? We know, we know, just give us a second, we’re getting to it geez….
In our travels, we’ve not only taught students around the world with every learning style, but we have also trained with a ton of instructors with the full gamut of teaching styles as well. We have seen and experienced what works firsthand, but we have also seen and experienced what doesn’t work. As our (Monica Kay’s and Billy’s) learning styles are also very different, we have had to work out the best methods to teach students who have different learning styles. Because of our unique experience, we have developed a teaching method and pedagogy designed to efficiently train up excellent dancers no matter their learning style or “talent”. Whether you’re a “natural”, or have two left feet, Kizomba Harmony CAN teach you how to dance! We are proud to say that we have never had a student that wanted to learn that we couldn’t teach!
In addition, because we have trained in a variety of styles, we can teach you how to dance both Kizomba/Semba, and also “new style”/”French Style”/”Urban Kiz”, which is a new style that has become very popular in the global community as well. Learning from Kizomba Harmony means that if you’re willing to put in the work, no matter where you travel, you will be comfortable dancing in any style, to any music, with anybody!
You won’t find instructors who are more passionate and invested in mastering their craft and helping their students master their dance!
How can I learn from Kizomba Harmony?
We offer weekly group classes in Houston, TX, as well as private instruction. We also host our 8-Hour Master Your Dance Intensives for those who want an intensive learning experience. We also have a healthy travel schedule teaching at events around the world (you can find our travel schedule HERE). If you can’t catch us in Houston or in a city near you, we also offer virtual instruction via our downloadable mobile instructional app Kizomba To Go and very soon, our online-based lessons Kizomba To Go Online! We are blessed to have students in 64 COUNTRIES and counting via our in-person and virtual lessons, so join them, you’ll be in great company!
Alright teach me some Kizomba you guys! Wait… err… what is Kizomba?
It’s basically the best thing ever! Why? Do you like hugs? Well, then you’ll love Kizomba, since that is basically what Kizomba is. Yup, dancing Kizomba means getting hugs all night long. Sounds like Heaven to us! And if you don’t like hugs, you gon’ learn today! Want a more detailed description? See below!
Kizomba is a partner dance and music originating from Angola, Africa that is wildly popular in Europe and is now exponentially gaining popularity in the USA. Kizomba, a derivative of Semba (another Angolan music and dance) is a respectful family dance that emphasizes the expression of musical interpretation through continuous movement and connection. This dance appeals to people of all dance backgrounds, ages, and skill levels. For those entering the world of partner dancing for the first time, Kizomba is an appealing first choice because the basics are comfortable to grasp and can be enjoyed on the dance floor in a shorter amount of time than other dances. For experienced dancers, the subtle intricacies of Kizomba makes this dance complex and the technique a fun challenge to learn with skills that can be applied to all other partner dances.
Hey you guys mentioned putting on events! What events?
We’re glad you asked! We already mentioned our Master Your Dance Intensives, but we also periodically organize weekenders in Houston where we bring in elite talents from around the world to train our community, and you can check out our events page HERE for more info. We are also proud to be the organizers of the Kizomba Harmony African Dance Experience, aka #KHADE, the 2nd edition of which will be taking place December 7-11, 2017 in Cancun, Mexico! Yup, Cancun… you can get more info and get your passes at www.KHADE.net! When we put on an event, quality is ever our measure, and you can rest assured that attending a Kizomba Harmony event means quality instruction and a great, all-inclusive. Thank you in advance for your support, we will never take it for granted!
I want to know more about your teaching philosophy!
Wow you are hardcore! I think we’re going to get along just fine. See below!
In our classes we emphasize teaching rock-solid technique over patterns. Often, Kizomba instruction (and salsa, bachata, etc.) is pattern-based, where students learn moves in set counts. Although often these patterns include awesome moves, we feel that this type of instruction is essentially choreography that students then struggle to replicate on the social dance floor with dancers who haven’t already learned the set patterns. As a result these students tend to then become frustrated on the dance floor, with their partners, themselves, and the dance itself, and therefore do not grow as dancers or simply quit. Our philosophy is aimed to prevent this from occurring. We feel that our mission of building a thriving, respectful Kizomba community necessitates providing quality instruction so as to create highly skilled social dancers. Our classes, both weekly and in workshops across the country and beyond, are designed to help facilitate this mission.
We are proud to provide quality instruction for both leads and for follows. Too often, instruction is heavily skewed towards the leads, while follows are expected to “just follow”. We believe this is a disservice to our dancers and the scene in general. For leads, our classes emphasize teaching leads how to lead clearly, confidently, musically and respectfully while developing your own style instead of being a pattern-dependent “robot”. For follows, our classes emphasize learning to be how to truly “let go” and follow instead of backleading, how to be responsive, “light”, and adaptable, and how to become an “active follow” that follows perfectly while adding her own flavor at the same time.
The term “musicality” is often thrown around these days in marketing materials, but what does that mean and how can you learn to implement it? We believe musicality is the ability to dance and move appropriately according to the music and one’s interpretation of said music. Much of musicality depends on the ability to hear the music, understand its structure and flow, but we believe that musicality is the progeny of technique, and therefore true musicality is impossible if one’s technique is not solid. As such we emphasize both the ability to hear and recognize the different types of music that is played where Kizomba is danced, and strong technique to be able to suitably express one’s interpretation of any music, with the aim of ensuring that our students are able to dance appropriately, confidently, and musically to any music, whether Kizomba, Semba, Zouk, Ghetto Zouk, Tarraxinha, R&B remixes or Instrumentals. Versatility and the ability to dance well to ALL types of music is what we are all about!
We make it a point to respect Kizomba, both the music and the dance, as a part of Angolan history and culture. Although we do encourage everyone to find their own style, we believe it is important to first get a good grasp of the fundamental techniques of Kizomba as it is traditionally danced before trying to add things. Often these days it is difficult to see what Kizomba in its purest form looks like on YouTube because people add elements of other dances such as Tango, Bachata, etc. and call it an “evolution” or “fusion”, or simply label it as “Kizomba” for marketing purposes. Often this marketing includes a misguided sexualization of the dance. On the music side, many people who dance Kizomba haven’t heard and therefore don’t recognize actual Kizomba music from Angola and other PALOP countries, instead mistakenly confusing the more widely played Ghetto Zouk, Tarraxinha, R&B remixes, etc. for Kizomba. Though we enjoy all these types of music, and we dance differently depending on the music (Kizomba, Ghetto Zouk, Semba, Zouk, Tarraxinha, etc.) we encourage our students to first develop a solid foundation before adding elements of other dances.
We are known as very technical and passionate instructors, but also make it a point to provide a positive, humble, welcoming environment in our classes, and on the social dance floor. We love dancing with beginners, so if you see us out and about, don’t be shy ask us for a dance! For class info please click on the Class Info tab above or you can just click HERE!
I want to know even more about you guys and what you’re up to!
We are so flattered! Well, we like long walks on the beach, and dinner by candlelight. Just kidding… well actually we do like those things. Join our email list to stay up to date with all the latest Kizomba Harmony news, and get special offers!
Or you can always Contact Us with any questions you have!