Modern Jive FAQ

Read our Modern Jive FAQ  for answers to some of the most frequently asked questions about Modern Jive and Jive Nation Toronto dance classes

Getting Started

Can I bring a friend?
Absolutely – the more the merrier! Come one come all.

Note: We always do our best to keep the men to women ratio balanced (and we have been very fortunate to have a pretty even balance most class nights) however please bear in mind the male/female ratio on any one night is generally something beyond our control. You’ll always be able to dance though, so just come along and dance anyway and if you can bring along a guy or a girl, great! Remember, many of our students come along solo, as well as with friends, you don’t need a partner to attend a modern jive dance class.

I don’t know how to dance

No worries. That’s why you’re coming to modern jive! We’ll teach you to dance.You don’t have to know how to dance, as Modern Jive is designed to help novices learn to dance socially, become confident fast, and have fun doing it. You may be amazed at how quickly you pick it up.

I don’t have a dance partner
No problem.  We  rotate everyone throughout the class so you’ll dance with different people and meet lots of new friends. Sounds complicated but it’s really not and you’ll see how simple it is. The rotation is part of what makes modern jive such a great social event as well as a dance lesson. During the freestyle practice part of the class we encourage you to ask others to dance – yes even if you’re a brand new beginner.

I have a dance partner. Do I have to rotate during the lesson?

Yes. Regardless of whether you attend with a dance partner or not all students will rotate and swap partners during the dance lesson. This is the best way to learn to dance. This is a great way to dance with and get to meet other people in the class – you will dance with everybody –  it gets you learning faster and it is part of what makes modern jive classes so much fun. It also ensures that everyone can get to dance – whether or not they come with a partner.  The teachers will always tell you when to swap partners – and you’ll generally dance with your new partner for  a couple of minutes or so before swapping again. And don’t worry – you’ll dance with the person you came with too. So please watch and listen to the teachers who will be on hand to guide you.

What should I wear?
There is no particular dress code, however we recommend wearing something you feel comfortable in and in which you can move about easily. It can get hot so ensure you can easily remove layers. We recommend smooth soled shoes and low heel shoes for women. Layers you can remove work well too.

Is Jive Nation Toronto Modern Jive Really For Beginners?
Yes, it really is. Our Beginner dance classes are designed for the complete beginner. Usually the class is made up of a mixture of Jive Nation Toronto beginners and regulars with different levels of dancing experience. So if you do get stuck,  chances are your dance partner will probably be able to help. We make dancing very collaborative and our teachers and regulars are supportive making us one of the most social environments in Toronto.

Can I start any day? Or do I have to start on a specific day?
You are welcome to attend your first class on any day,and generally there is no need to book (unless it’s for an event, or similar – if in doubt call or email) If it’s your first time we strongly recommend you arrive 10  to 15 minutes before the class starts. You will have time to settle in before the class begins.

Where is the venue?
Classes are at held at El Rancho, 430 College St Toronto. Address details and map can be found in the venues section of the website. We advise that you always check the website before leaving home in case of last minute changes.

About Modern Jive

What type of dance is Modern Jive?
Modern Jive is social partner dancing, similar to salsa, merengue, swing and with some elements of ballroom and tango. It is a Lead and Follow social dance and conventionally the men are the “dance leads” and the ladies  are usually the “Follows” or “dance Follows.”  Basically, in modern jive the men lead or initiate the dance moves and the ladies follow or “interpret”.  Think of it like a conversation. Even though the men lead the dance though  the ladies ask the men for dances just as much as the men ask the ladies.  In fact it is expected, we don’t stand on cermony. So ladies, no need to sit on the sidelines at modern jive hoping someone will ask you to dance. Beginner, Improver or Professional – anyone can ask anyone else for a dance. Everyone was a beginner at some point and learning to ask for a dance is all part of learning to dance.

Jive nation Toronto teaches a basic 4/4 step similar to a Merengue. It’s smooth, easy and has no fancy footwork to worry about – you just learn the moves, master the smooth leads, and you’re set!

How difficult is Modern Jive?
Modern Jive is very easy to learn, and by the end of a regular class we’ll have you dancing 3 dance moves competently by the end of the first night. We use lots of repetition each class and we rotate dance steps each week so that in a few weeks, with regular practice, you’ll feel very comfortable even though you will have learned a variety of dance steps. You will probably be amazed at how fast you pick up modern jive. And you can always ask a teacher for a dance or for some tips to help you improve your dancing, no-one is too good to ask for a dance.

How different from other dances is it?
Modern Jive has many similarities with Salsa, Swing, Ceroc, Leroc, and Ballroom dancing. The basic structure is similar to Merengue. Modern Jive is different because you can add your own style to it once you’re confident with the basic beginner dance moves. The other thing that makes modern jive different is that social mixing, having fun and great music are a central part of a modern jive class evening. Its all about partner connection, lead and follow. It’s lots of fun, and very easy to learn. The best way to find out more is to try it!

Is it easy to learn?

I have two left feet!
Our teachers are experts, and will show you exactly what you need to know to find your feet. So just get in there! And all the other regulars will help you too – it’s very social, and people are always on hand to help each other practice. Relax and have fun with it!

About our Class Passes

Can I buy my class pass in-venue?
Yes you can, however please note we only accept cash or cheque in the venue. If you wish to pay by credit card you must make your purchase online.

I brought my Class pass but I can’t start on the start date.
No problem. Your pass will be activated from the time you first use it.

I have not received my Class Pass
Jive Nation Toronto does not issue physical tickets. Simply bring a print out of your online receipt and show it at check-in.

I couldn’t make classes for a few weeks, could I have an extension?
If you think you’ll miss a few classes please use our Pay As You Go option. Otherwise our class passes are valid for a year from the time you first purchase.

Do I have to use my classes consecutively?
No. If  you miss a class you’ll still be able to pick up the next time you join, so no worries there. However you will get the greatest benefit and learn faster the closer together you do your classes, (particularly if you are new to dancing) because each class builds upon what you’ve learned the previous week.

Do you have a newsletter?

Yes! It’s free and full of the latest modern jive news and special discounts for subscribers. You can sign up for it here.

Happy Dancing!