We had the good fortune of connecting with Mat Dane and we’ve shared our conversation below.

Hi Mat, we’d love to start by asking you about lessons learned. Is there a lesson you can share with us?
There’s no substitute for success, there are no cutting corners in life and business if you truly want to be great. The recipe for success is a simple yet complicated as two words- hard work. 

Can you open up a bit about your work and career? We’re big fans and we’d love for our community to learn more about your work.
It wasn’t easy at all to get to where am today. I started off with Casino Salsa a decade ago with two friends. After 1 week one of my friends left. After a month of training, my other friend pulled me to the side and broke it down to me. “Mat, I think I’ve learned enough to be a good dancer at my family parties, I’m going to have to stop now” those words hit me like a bullet. What would I do? Stop right here? Or continue on? It was legitimately a hard choice at that time because I was so new and vulnerable to the salsa dance scene. I made up my mind. I stayed and never looked back, 10 years later and I’m here owning my own dance business a goal and dream I never imagined that day but slowly developed over time. There were many other challenges but over the years I added to my bag different styles of dance. Now I can say I am a lover of all forms of dance! I was instantly hooked with the dance, but I was intimidated by the new scene. I wasn’t welcomed in with open arms- and that’s something that I wanted to change and I make sure everyone at Dance Awakening knows they have a new family and support with no judgements or worries. I want the world to know we are an amazing family and if I can do it, so can you! We welcome you with open arms to check out our studio, socials, and lessons!

Any places to eat or things to do that you can share with our readers? If they have a friend visiting town, what are some spots they could take them to?
I’d take my friend for a private lesson at Dance Awakening for Yoga and start them off refreshed. Next I’d take them to their favorite restaurant, let’s pick Peruvian – Aromas De Peru. We’d eat and head straight over to the South Beach to our Bachata Social Beach Bash. We’d dance till the sunset and hit a picnic of tapas for dinner. We’d end the night over drinks with friends laughing the night away. Night Cap!

Who else deserves some credit and recognition?
A huge shoutout my partner Sergio Santiago! Sergio has been the yin to my yang. Sergio has been through thick and thin with DA and is the heart of our mission. Without him- there’s simply no DA. Although things aren’t perfect Sergio always has been the only person I trust to carry out our passion and vision for inspiring the next generation of dancers- the right way. Sergio aka Master Turtle aka Korytnačka thank you so much, you are so appreciated!

Website: www.danceawakening.org
Instagram: @danceawakening
Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/danceawakening
Yelp: https://www.yelp.com/biz/dance-awakening-west-miami?osq=dance+awakening
Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCJB_X5bQjHsIBFIDXrEFM_w

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