Student of the Month – Robert Leys


Robert Leys

by Lanny Udell

Dancing since:  When he first saw tango danced Robert thought to himself, “I want to be the kind of person who tangos!” He started taking lessons over 10 years ago in Sonoma County and attended several Boot Camps given by Christy Cote in the Bay Area.  “After a number of years I realized I would need to drive somewhere I could take lessons on a regular basis if I was going to learn this dance well enough to dance comfortably at milongas,” he says.


Tanya Rokhlin with Robert Leys
Alma del Tango Studio Práctica

Why tango:  “The dance is so alive and filled with nuance,” says our Student of the Month.  “It is a celebration of life!”  He also enjoys Scottish Country Dancing and, on occasion, ballroom dancing.  But tango is his main focus.

Favorite part:  It’s the elegance and grace of tango that Robert finds so captivating.  “Each dance is different…a function of you, the music and your partner.   Tango allows me to make that elegance and grace a part of my life.”

About Debbie and John:  Robert feels very fortunate to have found Debbie and John when he decided to take tango classes on a regular basis.  In 2012 he participated in the Tango Tales student production.  “Practicing and training for this show gave me a tremendous boost in competence but more importantly, in confidence,” says Robert. He is currently enrolled in Debbie and John’s Musicality seminar “which is wonderful for those of us who may find ourselves rhythmically challenged. I have always appreciated the teaching ability and supportiveness of Debbie and John through this continuing journey,” he adds.


Sammie Ellis with Robert Leys
Tango Tales 2012

What surprised him most: “I am continually amazed at the complexity and possibilities of a dance where all you are really doing is walking in close connection with another human being.


Helen Reutovski with Robert Leys
Tango Tales 2012

On a personal note:  Robert lives with his life partner Martie (who also tangos) in Sonoma County.  They have four children.  Robert has been a registered architect for over 35 years and has an architectural practice focusing on residential and commercial projects.

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