Behmardi said he has worked in the dance industry for more than 40 years. He started as a dance instructor and has owned numerous studios across the nation. Sixteen years ago, he launched Elegance Ballroom Dance Studio and Event Center in Oklahoma. He then moved the studio to Midland, and in 2019, he opened the doors to the location in Plano. First-time visitors to the studio will be asked what dances they are interested in learning. Students are encouraged to try: foxtrot, waltz, swing, cha cha, rumba and tango. The studio offers an introductory package for $45 that includes three private lessons and two group sessions.
Behmardi said he often gets requests to choreograph dances for weddings. Sometimes it is for the engaged couple, and other times it is a parent-child team.
“I ask [about] their wedding date, and we see if we have to rush [the choreography] or have time,” he said.
The age range of Behmardi’s students usually is between 20 and 90 years old, and their skill levels span from beginners to competitive, he said. Throughout the year, competitive dancers from Elegance Ballroom perform nationwide. The group stays in a hotel for a weekend, and the dancers spend an entire day competing. At the end of the competition, scores are given and trophies are awarded.
On Saturdays and Sundays, Elegance Ballroom serves as an event center. It is approximately 10,000 square feet and has a 320-person capacity, Behmardi said.
Daily rates range from $1,500-$2,500 and include tables, tablecloths, chairs and chair covers, he said.
Behmardi said his favorite thing about owning this business is seeing the smiles of his students.
“[One student] lost her husband years ago, and she was doing nothing, just sitting at home reading a book,” he said. “Now, when she’s here performing, you see the smile on her face. That makes my day.”
Elegance Ballroom Dance Studio and Event Center
8740 Ohio Drive, Ste. A1, Plano
Hours: Mon.-Fri. 1-10 p.m., Sat.-Sun. available for event center rentals only