Dance Spotlight – Oscar Aloyo

Oscar Aloyo is featured in this edition of Dance Spotlight!  He is a dancer based in Dallas and is a member of the Dallas Can Dance performance team. Oscar recently got married and his wife, Ruth, is also a talented dancer! He was nominated by Brian Romero.  Brian said, “I’d like to nominate Oscar for his unparalleled performance skills, his awesome bachata style, and charismatic and humble personality.” Check out fun and interesting facts about Oscar including his favorite dance moments and his thoughts on being able to share dance with his life partner.

Congratulations to you and Ruth on you recent marriage this past April (2021)! Not only are you a dancer, but Ruth is as well. Talk about how great it is to have a life partner that you can share dance with. Not everyone is that fortunate.

It’s incredible. She has helped me so much in my growth with dance. It’s great having a partner who you can trust, and she’s encouraged and challenged me to grow in dance. It’s been a very fun and humbling experience. We push each other to get better.  It’s a dream come true and I never expected this. It’s a lot of fun.

What (or who) originally inspired you to try Latin dancing? OR What are your first memories of latin dancing?

I got into dancing prior to meeting Ruth.  A bit over two years ago I got into the Bible and Christianity, and I started to study it.  I started realizing how prideful I was and the toxic masculinity I carried with me.  Christianity showed me how to humble myself.  I started to try new things and one of those was dance.  Latin dance helped me with letting go of my insecurities and frustrations particularly with learning something new and with something that I wasn’t good at.  I had two left feet. I almost didn’t walk into the classroom because I was so nervous.  It almost didn’t happen.

Salsa was the first latin dance I tried.  I took lessons with Kane Kong. I’d heard about him a little bit and had been looking for Salsa classes.  I lived in Bedford at the time. Again, I almost didn’t go to the class and I knew this was going to be one of the most humbling things I’d ever done, but I felt like I had to do it. I wanted a change in my life so I tried it!

Kane and his wife (Melanie Rosario) were so supportive and they treated me like family.  I didn’t expect that and I fell in love with the environment. It was exactly what I needed.

Do you remember your first dance with Ruth? If so, what was that experience like?

Yes! Our first dance was at Jairo Andres Rojas’ (Salsa with Jo) house at a New Years party.  Rebecca Weber, a mutual friend of ours, kept telling me that I needed to dance with Ruth.  My dance skills were getting better and Rebecca wanted us to dance.

Our first dance was to Salsa. I was being very mechanical and methodical. When Ruth tells the story she says that I hardly made any eye contact (laughs).

We did our first Bachata a month later and that was in Salsa with Jo’s class.  I’ve never danced Bachata with someone like her and it was one of my favorite dances ever.  It’s definitely one of my most cherished dances.

You perform with the Dallas Can Dance dance team that is led by Elisa and Sebastian. What is your favorite part of performing?

Performing is another humbling experience and I didn’t realize that I would try it.  I really love dance training and it helps me in other aspects of my life.  There is something about it. The workouts are different. I really enjoy performing for people and I enjoy performing with my wife.  I actually enjoy the practices the most and get a lot from them, and they foster a healthy lifestyle.

I used to play baseball religiously growing up and I actually played one year professionally in Canada.  How I feel when I’m performing is something that I haven’t felt since my peak moments when I played baseball.  Who knows how far I could’ve gone if I danced while I was playing baseball!

What recommendations would you give to someone who wants to start performing?

Trust your instructors! If you want to dance then go for it and they’ll take care of you especially in the Dallas community.  There are a lot of open, patient and caring instructors here and they’ll work with you.

Describe a moment in your dance life that made you feel proud?

There are a couple moments in dance competitions that I really enjoyed. There was a Bachata competition at Al-Amir Arlington that was hosted by Roberto Lay and I got thrown into the fire. I had no idea I was going to compete, but I participated. I was still fairly new and it was so much fun. I’m pretty sure I was doing basic steps the whole time and I was completely awful (laughs).  We lost, but it was so much fun.

I told Alice Nahapetyan about my competition experience and she said, ‘If you would’ve asked me, we would’ve won!” (laughs) A week later Sebastian and Elisa invited me to another competition at Clique Studios, so I asked Alice to be my partner. I’m thinking we’re going to lose in the first round because everyone in the competition was so awesome, and were incredible dancers. Well, Alice and I participated, we kept advancing and we actually ended up winning it! That was shocking and I’m sure I had this really silly, surprised look on my face when we did win and got handed the cash prize.

Competition gave me confidence to continue to pursue dance and I was like, ‘maybe I’m not as bad as I thought!’ (laughs). That actually led to another competition this past December (2020) at El Botanero Bar that I participated in with my wife and we got to share that moment. My sister actually came and watched and she was in tears because she couldn’t believe her brother was dancing and competing. My sister knows how I used to be. I was very antisocial and I didn’t know how to connect with people, and I couldn’t dance at all.

I really cherish those memories.

It seems like dance has been highly impactful in your life!

It’s been incredible. It’s helped to learn how to connect with people and I feel like this community is where I need to be. I think our wedding was mostly attended by dancers!

What would say to someone who is thinking about getting into the dance community, but they’re kind of unsure about it?

There are a lot loving people in the community. The instructors are great and they’ll take care of you. I’d advise them to go about dancing as innocently as possible and the possibilities for growth and forming a dance family will be endless! I’d say that they should definitely give it a shot!

Which do you prefer to dance  – Salsa or Bachata?

I prefer Salsa because of the intensity plus I like the exercise! But, since I met Ruth, I’ve invested a lot more of my time in Bachata and it’s a lot of fun as well. I like the vibe of the dance and it’s a great feeling to be able to share the dance with her.

Is there a dance video that you’d like to share?

Yes! One of my first dances with Ruth.

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