Dance Options History
The Seven Directors of Dance Options, Cheam 2008-2012 including Len and Vivienne Armstrong, retired from the Board of of Directors 2012
The original eight Directors of Dance Options, Cheam from 1993-2008 including Dean Abraham, retired from the Board of Directors 2008
Dance Options, Cheam was founded in 1993 by a partnership of four couples, each of whom were World Champions in their fields during their competitive careers. Their intention was to create the best possible environment for the teaching/coaching of competition dancers competing in the Ballroom and Latin-American styles and to offer those competitors the facility to practise their skills in the ideal conditions.
To this end the dance-floor area was maximised and a top-quality maple-wood floor laid. Together with a state-of the-art sound system, the foundations were laid to achieve their goal. Many years on, Dance Options, Cheam is established as the premier Ballroom and Latin-American dance studio in London and attracts competitors from all corners of the globe, who take lessons with one or more of the wide selection of world-class Teachers, who have chosen Dance Options, Cheam as their base.
As Ballroom Dancing became more widely popular with the general public (due in no small part to the popularity of “Strictly Come Dancing”), Dance Options, Cheam’s Directors responded by introducing classes for Beginners and Social Dancers. This proved extremely popular and the classes on offer have since developed to encompass various levels from Beginner – Advanced and take place on two evenings per week.
In addition, dance-fitness classes were introduced with “Zumba” and “Fitsteps” proving particularly popular. The Directors keep their fingers on the pulse of modern trends and react by changing the classes offered when appropriate.
Over the years since its inception the studio has benefitted from various improvements and enhancements such as the installation of air conditioning and atmospheric lighting to enable the perfect ambience to be created for each activity.
In October each year the studio celebrates its anniversary with an Allstars Party, where a number of the world’s foremost Amateur competitors perform cabaret versions of the Ballroom and Latin-American dances. This attracts spectators from aficionados to members of the public, who might be experiencing such a spectacle for the first time. All-comers are welcome, so please see “Allstars” under the Events heading for details of the next Anniversary Party.
Len and Vivenne Armstrong
Len, as an amateur, won the World European, British Open, International and United Kingdom Championships. At that time, the first and youngest ever to do so. As a professional he competed in many Latin Grand finals including the British Open in Blackpool. He was honoured to be the British professional Team Captain for 13 consecutive years, during this period the team was undefeated.
Meeting and dancing with Vivenne, a former British Open amateur Grand finalist and fashion model, they became Grand finalist in all the major professional Ballroom Championships winning many titles both at home and abroad.
In great demand to Demonstrate and Adjudicate they travelled the World until deciding to put all their energies into the family dance studio. Hawley Dancing Birmingham. It became very successful and indeed, was one of the largest in the country.
Interested in the politics of dancing for the good of dancers, Len was elected to be President of The British Dance Council and Vice President of the World Dance Council of which he now holds those positions in an honorary capacity. Former President of the International Dance Teachers Association he now serves the IDTA as the only honorary Director on its board.
Len enjoys and is proud to work with most of the World’s leading Professional and Amateur competitors today, as he done for many years.
Becoming Directors of Dance Options Cheam at its inception their vast knowledge of running a dance business has assisted it to become one of the most renowned dance studios in the World.