Margaret and Wilson

Margaret and Wilson

Margaret Burns and Wilson Barrera performing their signature number “After Supper” at the United Kingdom Championships in England. Video to be uploaded soon.


My moonlighting job. Only difficult part is waking up soooo early in the morning. It sort of interfers with partying the night before. I do love playing in hair though. I will be posting some of my creations on the hair and make up page soon.

Reality After the Ball

Written by on 4 Aug, 2009

After dance competitions there is always the crush of reality. You go away to a wonderful hotel somewhere and enter a world of fantasy. Your life becomes centered around the activities in the ballroom. What time are you dancing? What time does the session start? When does it end? Can we please make the rooms warmer? Colder? Who is going to the bar afterwards? What shall I wear to dinner? to breakfast? To eat or not to eat?

There is always a sense of drama and excitement. Beautiful people in beautiful gowns dancing around the dance floor. Surreal. Prizes and awards are plentiful. The cheering and support is addictive. You thrill to the yells and cheers of the crowd. The music is pounding and rich with rhythms. The story of the dance becomes all absorbing. What could be better than this? I have to say, not much.

And then… is over. You pack your things, always forgetting something – usually the charger. You go home. Why do our homes often looks as if a truck ran through it? Mine does. I usually pack in such a hurry to get to the hotel on time for dinner. The return home is a return to the mess we left behind and conveniently forgot about during our fling with bling. This is the reality of our everyday lives. Back to work. Clean, vacuum, pay a few bills, do the bank deposit, then on to our dance lessons.

All in all, it is a marvellous way to enjoy life. I am so looking forward to the next experience. Maybe you have favorite things you like to experience at these competitions. Maybe your home is not a mess. Either way, I am sure we all enjoy the escape to that incredible world of dance.

After the Show

Written by on 3 Aug, 2009

After watching a terrific show by Yulia and Riccardo, it was a pleasure to attend their workshop at Dance Fusion the very next day. Although we went to bed early the night before (2:30am), it was still difficult to wake up at 8am on a Sunday morning to arrive at Dance Fusion for my daughter to get her coachings with Yulia and Riccardo. The lessons and the workshops were totally awesome and certainly worth the early rise. I think that is the earliest Natasha has had to have a lesson. She handled it quite well. So proud of her.

Pasha and Anya Show

Written by on 1 Aug, 2009

Pasha and Anya did a great show tonight at the Florida State Championsips. The competition was great, although the ballroom was kept incredibly cold. Brrrr. More competitions tomorrow, with another terrific show from Yulia and Riccardo. My posts will continue with lots of details later. Have to get some rest for an early start tomorrow. First hair appointment is at 7:30am. Then watching my daughter from 10 till 11:30, lunch, judging from 1:30 till 3:30. Photo shoot for my daughter for Designs to Shine. More hair and make up. Dinner. Then the evening begins with more professional competitions to judge starting at 9pm. The show is ast 10:30pm. THEN the after party. THEN coachings on Sunday morning for my daughter with Yulia and Riccardo at 9:30am. I guess we will sleep Monday. Love this dancing business.

Great Dancing

Written by on 29 Jul, 2009

Just a quick break from my judging to say how awesome everyone is dancing at the Florida State Championships. Congratulations to everyone. Especially my lovely dancing daughter. She does such a great job with her dad Wilson Barrera.

Hi Everyone. My tango party page has been updated with the new information. I did change my party time to start with the free lesson at 7pm instead of the earlier 6pm. This will give the experienced tango dancers who are dancing earlier in Nokomis a chance to keep dancing at my party after theirs. Like I said, fun and excitement for everyone. The beginners have their lesson, a brief spell to party and practice before the advanced dancers arrive. Then we all get together for a wonderful balance of all levels and styles of dance. Awesome. At my last party everyone was extremely helpful with creating a truly harmonious and comfortable atmosphere for the new to dance dancers. There was no “one dance snobbery”.  All the advanced dancers there were advanced dancers in multiple dances and encouraged and helped the newbies a lot.  A really special thank you to them.

I have the pleasure of being invited to adjudicate at  many competitons throughout the year. Dancing in any form is almost always pleasurable to watch, so this is a perfect job for me. This week I will be judging the Florida State Dancesport Championshipsflstate_home at the stunning Ritz Carlton Hotel in Sarasota, Florida. My schedule is determined by the Chairman of Judges. I will check into the hotel tomorrow afternoon, get my schedule for at least a couple of days. I do hope I am not on the 7am panel Wednesday morning. Getting up early in the morning is not my forte. After coffee, however, I will be ready to roll. Each day tends to grow in excitement. By week’s end on Saturday evening everyone is exhausted and riding high on adrenaline and lack of sleep. I do love this business. Even after judging from 7am to midnight there is still a bit more energy to unwind by going dancing. I can hardly wait.

One Dance Snobbery

Written by on 26 Jul, 2009

I have  encountered “one dance snobbery” so many times in the past. Whether the dance was salsa, hustle, west coast swing, or argentine tango did not seem to matter. In general, when a new person arrives at the dance party, they would always be not danced with until they could prove that they could actually do that dance. Of course, unless  you went with someone that would dance with you, this was difficult to do. I have always found this to be unkind and not very gracious. Why do dancers do this? Some of these “one dance snobs” are’nt even very good. Well, they are – in their own minds. It is my observation that this snobbery occurs for several reasons.

1.  They actually believe that they are too good to dance with just anyone and will save that honor for only the best dancers.This sentiment is not always shared by the best dancers.

2. They know they are not very good and are afraid that the newcomer might be too good for them. The newcomer good or bad is usually happy to dance with anyone, rather than sit and watch.

3. They only know so many patterns/leads and are afraid to be stuck dancing a really long hustle, west coast, salsa or the three dances of an Argentine tango tanda. The only answer Ihave for this one is to play shorter dances and definitely not have to dance three dances in a row with the same partners (tango tanda requires this).

When one does arrive at a dance with a popular partner, the entire world is open to them. This is a great feeling. One that would be wonderful for all to experience as  I just did at a west coast swing dance called Floor Play. Awesome.

Orlando Dance Classic

Written by on 24 Jul, 2009

Natasha Barrera with Wilson Barrera in competitionI leave for the Orlando Dance Classic today. There should be a lot of wonderful dancing. I do enjoy judging dance competitions. It is always a pleasure to watch dancing. Of course, I would rather be on the floor myself.  All sorts of people enter these competitions.  As young as eight years old to pretty old. Last week I judged a young lady that was turning 100 years old this week. You are never too young or too old to enjoy dancing.

So many people say the cannot take dance lessons because they have “two left feet”.  I always answer with my motto. “Two left feet? I have your right”. If you don’t know how to dance, it is a good idea to learn. It can be a great way to get fit, stay fit, meet people, enjoy life.