This is the sixth of a series of Dancer Spotlights to show how dancing fits into someone’s day.

Bill is an energy researcher and amateur photographer. He can often be found taking pictures on a hike or for a wedding on weekends. Bill’s first forray into dancing wasplanning the Christmas Ball for Hong Kong University five years ago. The planning booklet described opening with Waltz dancing. Although this has not been done for several years, Bill thought it was a good tradition to uphold. So he convinced 20 classmates to take a 4-hour dance lesson with a private instructor.

Although dancing at the Christmas Ball was very fun, Bill didn’t dance again… until someone invited him to the Stanford Viennese Ball this year. While attending the Viennese Ball, a friend told him about Stanford’s dance classes and Nick and Melissa‘s Unofficial Social Dance 1. Bill really enjoyed taking the Unofficial class and even prepared a Thank You card for Nick and Melissa with our signatures. He especially likes the small class size because he got to know each classmate.

The hardest part of learning to dance is getting used to physical contact, especially with strangers. Bill comes from a culture without much physical contact, so he has to works hard to lead clearly and assertively. But he loves that dancing is a social activity because his hobbies and work are mostly individual activities. Bill is a bit shy on asking strangers to dance, so ask him to dance when you see him!

On Friday, Bill was doing research in his lab before going to Friday Night Waltz. He convinced a friend to try out dancing for the first time, and being a great friend, took the introductory Waltz class with her instead of the intermediate class. When the class ended, they joined the social dance for a bit. I took advantage of this time to ask Bill for tips on how to use different features on my new camera. After dancing for a while, Bill and his friend left early to watch Finding Dory.

The next day, Bill took engagement photos for a couple from his department.

To Bill, dancing means experiencing: “Dancing means experiencing the music, the move, the people I met, and the story from them. In the end, I’m still a storyteller. A storyteller who collect through words, photos, and now dance.”

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