It Takes Two Men to Tango

Steve Valentine has always dreamed of making same-sex ballroom dancing more than a novelty. Now, with his gay ballroom dancing program debuting in West Hollywood in January, he may. But for Valentine, ballroom is about more than having fun and feeling sexy. He wants to compete -- and win.

BY Japhy Grant

January 28 2008 12:00 AM ET

“There’s something about two men dancing
together that’s so beautiful and powerful,"
gushes Steve Valentine, the creator of a gay ballroom
dancing program debuting in West Hollywood in January.
Inspired by the popularity of shows like Dancing
With the Stars,
Valentine has partnered with
the city of West Hollywood and North American
International Ballroom Finalist Christopher Beroiz to give
amateurs a chance to swivel their hips in the cha-cha,
fox-trot, and tango in a fun and easy environment.

There’s a
bit of a love story at the heart of these classes.
Valentine, a dance enthusiast and publicist, had seen
same-sex ballroom dancing only a handful of times
(often as a novelty) and yearned for the opportunity to
try it. But there’s more to same-sex dancing than
finding a partner.

Ballroom Dancing x395 (Publicity shot) | Advocate.com

“There’s a lot of issues of who leads and who
follows, who's the top and who's the bottom on the
dance floor,” Valentine explains. One day, while
doing errands, he passed by a ballroom class saw
“this beautiful man teaching a straight couple
to dance” and was blown away. After the class
was over, he approached the instructor, Christopher Beroiz,
and they struck up a friendship. Valentine pitched his
idea of bringing ballroom dancing to Los Angeles gays
and Beroiz joined up. The story leads Valentine to
confess, “The truth is, this all started when I was
stalking a ballroom instructor because he was
hot.”

Tags: Dance

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