Dance is Joy


My father introduced me to Gene Kelly and Donald O’Connor when I was 10… in a figurative sense. Dad loved musicals and Singin’ In The Rain became one of my favorites. I was obsessed with their tap dance to Moses Supposes and practiced every day after school until I ‘got it’…or something slightly resembling it…

My dad also taught me to Jitterbug and Waltz and we watched musicals year after year and these are my most treasured times and memories of my father. Dancing became my passion and my skills were honed in varying dance styles. Traditional tap dancing to Anchors Aweigh, Jazz movement to Chicago’s All That Jazz which eventually progressed to a ridiculous dance my 3 sisters and I performed to Disco Duck. Don’t ask!

Dancing was always a family hobby and to this day, my 5 siblings and I will throw down at any appropriate or inappropriate opportunity… it brings us joy and has bonded us deeply. My daughters love to dance, and so far, my 2 grandchildren Leo and Vivi are on the same Soul Train dance path! It’s what we do!

Many people don’t think they can dance. I often hear friends say that they have two left feet or resemble Elaine from Seinfeld. Most feel insecure or awkward that they will ‘do it wrong’ and therefore never attempt. My advice: there is no wrong. All movement to the music that makes you happy IS dance. When I teach Zumba, it brings me joy to see the people that choose to move the way they want to move… not necessarily following my choreography at all! Those dancers leave class de-stressed, sweaty and smiling. THAT is the joy of dance.

Don’t just take my word for it!  Research supports the benefits of dance.  Studies support the benefits of dance. HERE is one of the latest. Not sure where to start? Take this QUIZ to decipher the dance that matches your personality!


About Author

Angie Calli Fernandez

Recreation Fitness Program Coordinator

Angie grew up a dance and golf loving Hoosier. Duke University beckoned her to North Carolina and while she will die a devoted Blue Devil, she is proud to call the Tarheel state her home. Fitness has been Angie’s career for over 30 years and she has held multiple national certifications and taught innumerable class types and styles and personally trained all ages and sizes. Family and fun are the cornerstones in her life and she and has been blessed with 4 amazing daughters, two perfect grandsons - Leo and Pierce - and two perfect granddaughters - Viviana and Camila. Working at SAS is a dream come true for Angie and she hopefully will live out the remainder of her days spreading her love of life to her new SAS family!


  1. Agreed - Dance is joy! Many of the happiest and most memorable moments of my life involve dancing! Thanks for sharing your story with us.

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