Music I'm loving now
Gilberto Santa Rosa
Favorite Dance Song:
Allegria - Fania All-Stars
Salsa - Instructor
Dakota born in the Bay Area of Northern California, Dakota was a musician from an early age. Coming from a musical family and spending much of his youth in a music recording studio, an understanding of music and rhythms has been a big part of his upbringing.
Dakotas dance history began after he moved down to Los Angeles where he would occasionally take Salsa classes at a summer camp. After graduating high school in 2012 Dakota began taking weekly group classes with Salsa Brava dancer Oscar Ramírez. In early 2015 he joined his first dance company as a part of Clave Y Tumbao's Salsa and Bachata teams under the direction of Javier Campines and Erica Reyna. Later in 2015 he began training for a ProAm competition with Erica which they went on to win at the 2016 World Salsa Summit. In the following years Dakota performed and competed throughout the United States with Clave Y Tumbao. In 2017 and 2018 he began assisting and contributing choreograph to the Clave Y Tumbao Training Salsa team. In 2018 he choreographed and helped coach the Clave Y Tumbao Bachata Team at the beginning of 2018 Dakota joined the SoHo family when he started training with Raúl Santiago and Yesenia Serratos for their SoHo Hustle Team. Early in 2018 Dakota also began training with Eder Avila as a part of his men's shines team, Alpha of On2ourage and has continued to perform around the country. 2019 marked a shift for Dakota as he left his first dance team and began training with the On2ourage ProAm Team under Eder Avila and Gracielle Tan.
In 2016 Dakota met and began dancing with his partner Alana Puerto. They performed many routines with Clave Y Tumbao and competed as a couple at local, national, and international competitions. They have won two international titles and placed in national competition. Together they began choreographing their own routines near the end of 2018 and have performed their shows across the country.
Dakota has been assisting classes as early as 2014 and began teaching a beginner and an intermediate Salsa class in 2016. He has taught salsa and bachata at numerous studios and events in Los Angeles since then. Through the years his training has included LA Style Salsa, New York Style Salsa, Urban/Sensual Bachata, Traditional Bachata, Merengue, ChaChaCha, Latin Hustle, Afro-Cuban, Rumba Guaguanco, and Jazz. Having a wide variety of experience has cultured a unique teaching style that is fun and offers a challenge for all experience levels.