Learn at the Home of Melbourne's Salsa,
Bachata & Brazilian Samba Classes
What our Students love about MLD
Students of ALL levels love, love LOVE performing at our annual MLD Showcase! You will too! 😉
Melbourne's Home of Latin Dance
Founded in 2005, MLD is one of Melbourne’s longest running, most established and most experienced Latin dance schools in Melbourne. The founding director Liz was a pioneer of both LA Salsa and Bachata in Melbourne.
At MLD, we’re all about teaching our students the correct technique from the start with lots of attention to detail. It’s our thing. But beyond being meticulous about teaching our students well, above all, MLD is a super friendly and fun place to learn Latin dance in Melbourne! We are so proud of how uber lovely and friendly our students are and the fun, warm and welcoming family vibe at the studio!
We welcome students of all levels from absolute beginners to advanced dancers!
Come with a friend or come alone – you don’t need to come with a partner!
Dance Styles We Teach
"If You Love What You Do, Others Will Too"
What We Offer At MLD
8 Week Courses
FREE TRIAL classes
OtherAwesomeStuff We Offer!
Free Revision Videos
End of Term Party
Catch Up Classes
Absolute Beginners Booster
You are welcome to come with a partner but YOU DEFINITELY DO NOT NEED TO COME WITH A PARTNER! 🙂
Most of our students do not join with partners.
Basically all of our partnered classes have a maximum of 40 students – 20 guys and 20 ladies. At the beginning of each class all the students partner randomly and form a circle and then throughout the class the students rotate through the circle and change partners every few minutes.
Students who do join the course with a partner and do not wish to rotate with other students are absolutely welcome to dance only with their partner.
We allow a maximum of 40 students in our classes. In our partnered dance classes such as Salsa and Bachata, we allow 20 men and 20 women. This is again another benefit of courses versus casual classes as this means that we can better ensure a more even ratio of men:women.
After years of teaching Latin Dance, with constant attention to honing and refining both our skills and teaching methods, we have come to the conclusion that running 8 Week Salsa Courses as opposed to “Casual” or “Drop In” classes really is the best way for us to most effectively and efficiently teach and respectively the best way for our students to learn. Also, having travelled throughout the Australian and world salsa scenes and observing their trends, it is clear that the best salsa schools tend to offer syllabus courses rather than just casual classes.
Liz first started teaching Salsa in 2003, even before MLD and back then even she, like many dance schools today, used to only run casual classes. This meant that every week, or every other week new people would come to the Beginners Classes, often never having danced a single step of Salsa in their lives (which incidentally, we love!) however back then, this meant that she would have to go back to the very beginning for these new comers meaning that the people in the class who had been coming along for the past 3, 5, 10 or however many weeks would understandably become quite bored. She overcame that by running 8 Week Courses where everyone starts together at the beginning of the course and progress together as a group each week. This does mean that you may have to wait a few weeks until the next course starts, but it’s definitely worth the wait, and far more beneficial than picking up bad habits.
At MLD, way the 8 Week Courses work is that at Week 1 we teach the first move of the syllabus. Then the following week we do a quick revision and correct anything that needs “cleaning up” and then add need next part of the syllabus. Every week after that for the entire 8 Weeks we continue to revise, clean and add, steadily building as we teach the entire routine.
We have found that by doing this, students progress at a much faster pace and actually retain what they have learnt and therefore are able to actually use it when dancing socially, which of course is what it is all about! Too many times students doing casual classes complain that they keep attending classes but can’t remember the turn patterns/moves. Structured syllabus courses overcome this.
The basic structure of all our partnered classes is at the beginning of the class the men and women learn their footwork separately so they know what they are doing independently of each other, then everyone partners up randomly in a big circle, rotating partners every few minutes. At the Intermediate and Advanced levels, there is also a 5 – 10 minute isolations warm-up followed by shines before we move on to the turnpatterns (the actual salsa or bachata dance moves!) 🙂
An additional benefit of courses v’s casual is that because we repeat and add to the turnpattern over the 8 Weeks, we are also constantly “cleaning” the entire routine over the term. This means that our students are far less likely to get into bad habits by learning the routine once, as in casual classes and then practicing it by themselves without the instructor to correct and guide them.
Courses also mean that we have much greater control of the ratio of men and women in our partnered classes. That is, we limit our courses to 20 men and 20 women. We know by the first week of the term what the ratio is and if the numbers aren’t balanced we can take measures such as inviting students into the course either from higher levels or other courses to balance out the numbers.
Courses are definitely a win! 🙂
Clothing for Salsa and Bachata
Anything you’re comfortable in is fine. Many students come to class straight from work in suits, others in tracksuits or jeans. Absolutely anything goes, but we also have change rooms if you’d prefer to change 🙂
Footwear for Salsa and Bachata
The requirements for footwear are a little more specific. For both men and women ideally dance shoes should be worn. However, when you’re first starting out at the beginners level, it’s not a big deal if you don’t have dance shoes. In this instance, until you get yourself some dance shoes (and we have them available at the studio at very reasonable prices) here are some guidelines:
– shoes that are comfortable and preferably have a thin, flexible sole (ladies, they do not have to have a heel)
– shoes that fit securely and ‘hug’ the foot
– sneakers that have a thin sole and do not have much grip are a great alternative to dance shoes
DO NOT WEAR
– thongs and other slip on shoes
– runners as they usually have a very wide and sometimes grippy base which may lead to an injury whilst turning and spinning
– (for the ladies) wedges, platforms, pointy toed shoes and stilettos. (I know, they’re super pretty, but just not great to learn dance in!)
– shoes with thick soles or a “lip” around the edge of the shoe (ie, the sole is wider than the upper of the shoe)
Once you’ve done your first term and you know you want to continue, please see us about getting some dance shoes or jazz shoes. Unisex Jazz Shoes are available at the studio from $50 – $70 and latin heels for the ladies from $120 (and they are gorgeous and SUPER comfy!). There really is a VAST difference between dancing in regular shoes versus dance shoes. If you’re going to invest your time and money on the classes, we strongly encourage you get some dance shoes. For those doing salsa, certainly by your second term when you do Salsa Tech concurrently with your second Beginners Salsa Course, you really should have dance shoes to gain the benefit of Salsa Tech. If you don’t have dance shoes or jazz shoes by the time you do tech, socks may be a good option.
Clothing for Samba
Dress as though you are going to the gym! Leggings, shorts, track pants and sneakers are the attire to go with. Also be sure to layer tops – you’re going to need to peel them off! Samba can be quite a workout!
Footwear for Samba
In term of footwear, ideally jazz shoes or samba shoes. If you are just starting out and would rather wait until you know if Samba is for you before you invest in dance shoes, then please wear sneakers rather than runners. Then, once you’ve fallen in love with samba and you know you’ll be continuing, we strongly recommend that you get a pair of Jazz shoes ($50 – $70 from the studio) or Samba heels ($150 – $170).
The minimum age for all partnered classes such as Salsa and Bachata is 18 and over. The minimum age for solo dance styles and classes such as Samba, Salsa Tech and Shines is 15 and over.
Although the average age group is 20’s and 30’s, there is no maximum age at Melbourne Latin Dance!
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