Received some very worrying news. One reason I’d begun taking lessons with a new teacher is that Pasha, my teacher of a year and a half (pictured above, competing at the U.S.National Championships last September with his pro partner, Anna Garnis) has been MIA from the studio since our last showcase in October. I’d originally been told he was “taking a short break” and would be returning soon to resume lessons. Being the most popular teacher at the school (that’s where looking like a 26-year-old Latin Baryshnikov, and being an awesome dancer to boot, will get you here in these United States ) and having so many students that in that last showcase they had to set up a Chinese screen in the wings for him so he could zip in and out of his various costumes during the show, I figured we’d all run the poor guy down to the point that he needed a big long break from us all. But it’s now been a while.
So I made some inquiries. Found out that he wasn’t just taking a break, he’s been very ill, and even spent some time in the hospital.
Apart from the sadness of his being sick, everyone is so worried about him financially. Most ballroom dancers (and I would suppose most dancers in general) have no health insurance, so these medical bills are just going to be astromonical. Plus, most ballroom dancers make their living entirely by teaching, and they’re not salaried, so every day he’s bedridden is another day he’s losing out on essential income derived from his lessons. People are thinking of organizing some kind of benefit for him at the studio, and I’ll definitely post about that if it comes to fruition. I’m just so worried. Please keep him in your prayers and thoughts.