Check the REGISTER page for class start dates.



Course Descriptions

  • Salsa: Beginner 1
    If you’ve never danced salsa, or only danced a few times in your life, this series is for you.  We start at the beginning and help you master the basics of in-line or “L.A. style” salsa.
  • Salsa: Beginner 2 (not currently offered)
    You know the basic steps. You’ve got several moves under your belt but you want to learn more! If this describes your level of preparation, try our Advanced Beginner salsa courses. We build on the basics, teach new figures and introduce fundamentals of salsa movement.
  • Salsa: Intermediate (not currently offered)
    This class is for dancers who have moved beyond the basic salsa vocabulary and  have frequently danced outside a classroom setting. We will learn increasingly complex figures emphasizing double turns, communication with your partner, and salsa styling. This class is appropriate for students who have taken all three advanced beginner classes or who bring comparable salsa dance experience to the class.
  • Bachata (not currently offered):  If you like salsa, you will love BACHATA! Born in the Dominican Republic, bachata—the music and the dance—expresses the joy and heartbreak of romantic love. The basic bachata step is a beautiful and stylish movement that almost anyone can learn with relative ease.  Our class will not only teach you the basics, but will augment the repertoire of even the most experienced Latin style dancers.

Frequently asked questions:

  • Where IS Eastside Salsa? Our classes are held at The Starkweather Club
    72 N Bryan St, Madison, WI 53714
  • Where do I park? The Starkweather Club has a spacious parking lot. Street parking is also available.
  • How much do classes cost? $45 for a four-class course or $13 to “drop in” for one class. You can pay in person with a check or with cash. If you want to use a credit or debit card, go to our “Register” page and pay via PayPal. If you register in person, please plan to pay with cash or a check.
  • Am I a lead or a follow? Traditionally, men take the “lead” role when dancing salsa and women take the “follow” role. However, gender does not determine role in our studio. We invite and encourage you explore the dance role that best suits you. Leads initiate the movement of the dance. Follows create the dance by accurately and creatively reading the lead’s communication.
  • What if I’m not sure I’ll like this dancing stuff? You can drop in for one class.
  • Do I need a dance partner to register? No. Most of our students come to class without a dance partner. In our classes we constantly rotate so that everyone has the opportunity to dance with a partner.
  • Can I drop in at any point in the four class series? Not really. If you miss the first class, you’re usually fine to begin with the second class in the series. After that, you have probably missed too much.
  • Is Eastside Salsa LGBT friendly? Yes. Eastside Salsa seeks to be a queer friendly dance environment. We do not discriminate based on sexual orientation. As mentioned above, gender does not determine the lead or follow role in our studio. While most of our students appear cisgendered and take on traditionally gendered dance roles, we have had several female leads and a few male follows.
  • Are there age limits in your classes? You have to be 15 older to participate without parent or guardian supervision. There is no age ceiling. You simply have to be healthy enough to take the class.*
  • What should I wear to class? Most people wear normal street clothes to class. You may work up a light sweat during class, but you should not expect a strenuous workout.
  • What shoes should I wear: While there is no need to buy special dance shoes, you need to wear shoes with smooth soles. Shoes designed to give you traction will inhibit your ability to turn and may stress your knees. For men, a conventional dress shoe with a leather bottom works well. Women should wear a shoe that stabilizes the entire foot including the heel. Mule back shoes do not work well for salsa. A low heel is fine but not required. Flats are fine.

* Salsa dancing is a physical activity. It requires some strength and stamina and may place stress on your joints. If you have questions about your physical ability to take a salsa dance class, please consult your doctor before registering.