“Dance is life” are words that 33 year old Carl Turner lives by. He also adheres to the motto, “She just wants me for my musicality,” Which gives us a glimpse into Carl’s whimsical, colorful personality.
Described as eclectic, tall and intriguing, Carl started dancing at 24, and all because he was bored! He began by signing up for a salsa series class to occupy his time. Fast forward to present day where Carl teaches 1-2 nights a week and goes out dancing 3-4 times a week. Which was even more when he lived in LA.
With limited training, Carl dove in head first, starting with ballroom, then taking on ballet, jazz, modern, and a smidgen of contemporary and tap. He now loves dancing to whatever music is playing, (although some of his favorites are Chet Faker, Alina Baraz and Gotan Project).
He got more into dancing when his girlfriend wanted to take salsa lessons. They signed up together, but later split. He joined the navy instead of going to school at first, but upon his return from service he studied physics. Then after leaving the navy Carl picked up where he left off and has been teaching for 6 years since.
While studying astrophysics had been a long time dream realized, pursuing dance therapy is a goal recently achieved. While in Brazil he discovered Biodanca, a type of dance therapy which helped him deeply connect with dance on a level which he had been missing as a performer and professional. But now dance is all that Carl dreams about. He can’t imagine what else he would be doing if not for dancing because he says that dance literally saved his life. Elaborating, “I was very suicidal, and after trying to cope with how different a bike accident had left me, I gave up on life. Dance showed me that there was passion to be had anyway, even if you can’t remember things.” Along with other health benefits, Carl attributes his 6 pack largely to his dancing. If that weren’t reason enough, Carl shares, “I dance when sad, happy, hurt, relieved, in pain, surprised, depressed. It really helps with everything. Adding, “It’s also a great way to release energy and doesn’t harm anyone. And the higher levels of dopamine, serotonin, endorphins and oxytocin are all good juju!”
So to those who believe that dance is more for women and not “manly” thing to do, Carl retorts, “HAHAHAHHAHAHHAHAHAHHAHHAHAHAHHA you idiots. So you think being manly is playing a sport where you get sweaty touching a bunch of other men, instead of making ladies feel nice?” I’ve met many a dancer who has expressed the same sentiment, although not usually as colorfully as Carl! And to those who don’t consider dance a sport, Carl challenges, “Meet me at a ballet or contemporary conditioning class and I’ll meet you on the field. We’ll see who finishes!” Touché Carl, touché!
Despite at one point vowing not to date anymore dancers, Carl admits that he went back to dating in the dance scene because “Normal people kinda suck,” he sarcastically retorted in the bold way in which only he can.
Carl most enjoys the ambiance of ATOMIC and as unconventional as he can be, Carl’s serious, sensible side would advise a first timer not to give up because, (he explains) “Just remember that there was a time when you couldn’t walk, and now you can run. Just keep at it, then you’ll find your way.”
FAST FIRE QUESTIONS :
• Something people would be surprised to learn about you?
“I was couple units away from a physics degree, but quit to dance full time.”
• Guilty pleasure • Dancing in the grocery store to the music on the speakers.
•He’s most like his Spirit Animal the Jaguar, which he has had since he’s been a child.
•Favorite dancers of all time • The Turner Brothers.
• Other interests : “Video games, reading, thinking about how I would escape death in the most ridiculous ways.”
• A dance you might like to try that you haven’t yet • “Polka. It’s my joke that I now expect Polka at every dance.”