Alfonso Rios - DIrector
Dance, culture and music – the three base elements of Salsa. These interconnected components are why salsa is so addictive and popular around the world. Together they give Salsa its contemporary heartbeat; echo its profound history; and provide that infectious energy. There are few Salsa teachers worldwide who are able to share with you their knowledge, understanding and respect of the dance, culture and music of Salsa, better than Alfonso Rios.
Born in Lima, Peru, Alfonso trained at the Conservatory of Music before having the great fortune to study under some of Peru’s best musicians in Afro Latin-American Music. He has had many years of international experience as a professional Latin Percussionist. This is only one side of the man though. Alfonso is the director of Salsa Moves NZ and the pioneer for Salsa in the Otago area. Alfonso, also known in NZ as Mr Musicality, is without a doubt one of New Zealand’s finest Salsa dancers; his smooth, playful style coupled with strong masculinity is his trademark.
With his many years of experience as a Salsa Instructor, natural musicality, originality, passion and a desire to continually expand his knowledge, it is no wonder why Alfonso quickly became a highly sought-after Salsa Instructor and Judge throughout the country.
Alfonso has lived in Dunedin for the past 14 years, (currently training/living in Lima - Peru) and has been the driving force behind many Salsa events in Dunedin, Otago, Southland and Queenstown.
His students reflect his love and inspiration for the dance, culture and music of Salsa.
In many ways Alfonso has shaped how we see Salsa in our country, helping the development of a strong new generation of dancers and instructors. He is the teacher's teacher.
In 2015 Alfonso was awarded the NZ Latin Dance Industry Award, acknowledging that many of today's best Salsa dancers and teachers in NZ have been taught by him.
Alfonso’s classes at Salsa Moves NZ will provide you with the opportunity to deepen your appreciation, passion and enjoyment for Salsa. Whether you are new to Salsa, or have years of experience, Alfonso will open your eyes, ears and soul to that essence of Salsa which you might have been missing.
Alfonso has taught Latin Percussion at the University of Otago, Auckland University and has been invited several times to festivals around New Zealand to perform and to lead dance and percussion workshops.
Music, Arts & Dance Festivals:
Jambalaya Festival - Rotorua
Taranaki Art Festival - New Plymouth
Rhythm & Vines - Gisborne
Woodford Folk Festival - Brisbane/Australia
Sound Splash Festival - Raglan
Auckland Arts Festival - Auckland
NZ Salsa Congress - Wellington
Bay Salsa Festival - Tauranga
Aotearoa Cuban Festival - Rotorua
Parihaka Peace Festival - Taranaki
Sydney Festival - Sydney/Australia
Queesntown Jazz Fest - Queenstown
Cuba Street Festival (currently Cuba Dupa) - Wellington
Arts Festival Dunedin - Dunedin
Edinburg Fringe Festival - Edinburg/Scotland
WOMAD UK - Reading/England
And many others...
Alfonso has adjudicated at the following competitions:
South Island Salsa Competition - Christchurch
New Zealand Salsa Nationals - Auckland
Salsa Solos NZ - Christchurch
Kiwi Classic Dance Competition - Auckland
NZ Salsa Championships - Auckland
NZ World Latin Dance Cup - Auckland & Christchurch
Dimitri & Yulia - Instructors
Dimitri and Yulia are a young professional couple with a passion for life, food, cats, Salsa Music and Dance.
Originally from the Ukraine and Russia, Dimitri and Yulia plunged into the Salsa world 6 years ago while working in Wellington, New Zealand.
With the fun, addictive energy that Latin music brings into our lives, they got hooked. In 2012 they decided to join one of NZ's finest Salsa teams, The Clave Collective directed by Jacob Rosevear and Chloe Robinson.
With Dimitri's martial arts background, and Yulia's Russian folk & classical ballet training, coupled with the investment of many hours of training every week, their Salsa quickly evolved to a high standard. They have performed across New Zealand and at the Sydney Salsa congress.
They have both been trained by top NZ and international Salsa instructors and champions.
In 2015 they moved to Dunedin, and to their surprise they discovered there was even more to learn about Salsa culture than they first thought. They arrived at Salsa Moves Studio and were trained by NZ's "Mr Musicality” Alfonso Rios, as they saw the perfect opportunity to expand their knowledge learning about the secrets of musicality, different cultural influences in Salsa music and how it is reflected in the Dance.
As the newly graduated teachers at Salsa Moves, their aim is to create a welcoming, friendly environment for all students and, most importantly, teach the best Salsa in Dunedin.
Just come and check it out yourself!
Welcome Dimitri and Yulia to the Salsa Moves Family