Created in 2015 by professional teachers Jill Strong and Colin Smith, Could I Have This Dance is a friendly and welcoming Ballroom and Latin American dance school based in Epsom and Ewell, Surrey.
Jill and Colin met in 2009 and in subsequent years became regular partners at classes and social dances. In 2015 they joined forces to open their own school and Could I Have This Dance was born. Created with a focus on social dancing as well as exams, the school offers a relaxed teaching approach, professional-quality training and an unapologetic emphasis on having fun!
“We've never left a class without feeling better than when we arrive.”
Tim, West Ewell
Colin first began dancing aged 20 whilst attending local dinner dances with his parents. After several occasions watching from the sidelines (and chatting with his twin brother!), he took the plunge and started learning himself.
From there, Colin passed his medal exams and grew into a proficient and experienced dancer. He first started teaching in 2008, when his then teacher invited him to help run the class. Having discovered his love for teaching, Colin went on to train professionally with the IDTA, where he gained Associate qualifications in Ballroom and Latin American.
Jill’s love for classical dance was born in childhood, where she learnt her craft performing in Old Time dance competitions and taking medal tests. Ballroom and Latin soon became her favourite and Jill’s teenage years were spent sharpening her skills through regular training. As an adult, life commitments forced dancing into a back seat, but Jill’s passion for Ballroom and Latin remained alive and well. In 2009, she returned to dancing after 30 years and was happy to find that, much like riding a bike, it all came flooding back!
Keen to stretch themselves and keep developing their skills, both Jill and Colin continue to take monthly lessons with an ex-champion Ballroom and Latin dance teacher.
"In a few years I have gone from a non-dancer to a man with a right foot as well as a left foot! Still a long way to go before I can call myself a dancer but my wife likes the improvement!! We've never left a class without feeling better than when we arrive and have made great friends with the many others who have been coming regularly too. Colin and Jill know exactly how to lead us forward and as we would want - our learning never stands still. Everyone is encouraging and it doesn't matter if it takes what seems forever to achieve new steps - patience is endless - a real place of support and delight."
“Thank you for all your help (and patience!) in putting together our wedding dance. We absolutely love it and hope we do it justice on the day."
Abby & David, West Ewell
“Thanks to their patience, good-humour and teaching skill, we came away able to do the dance reasonably well and with confidence. We enjoyed every minute of the lessons. Jill and Colin made it all so much fun and left us wanting to continue learning from them soon.”
Ken & Deanne, Dorking
"Our joint private lessons with Colin and Jill provide a flexible and “student led” approach which works well for us. We have progressed well with lots of laughs and attention to details that we find difficult and we find the presence of two teachers particularly helpful. Videoing our moves and providing professional videos helps with our practice. Learning should be fun and it is with Colin and Jill."
Phil & Jan, Cheam
“I am well hooked now on ballroom dancing after being a regular at Jill’s and Colin’s dance classes over several years. This well taught class has given me a wide repertoire of moves, with which, as a single man, I can impress the ladies.
“As a pair, Colin and Jill can demonstrate a figure accurately and more clearly than a single teacher, sequentially in each gender, as in some classes. Correct body position, footwork, and timing, is alluded to throughout, and class programme notes are provided in advance.
“A policy of encouraging dancers to circulate, if comfortable, considers those without partners, and makes for a friendly atmosphere.
“Additional workshops provide more time for enlarging on the finer points, and for those who want it hammered home. Socials on several Saturday evenings allow a practise with those that you know, which makes for more confidence in the beginning.
“Give it a go men!”
Clive, West Ewell