Dancer Extraordinaire: Get to Know Patty Contenta Part 1

Patricia (Patty) Contenta, one of Connecticut’s favorite Canadian imports, is not only the judge at Beach Ball 2016, but also an amazing dancer and dance consultant. More than just a pretty face telling you to point your toe, we wanted to give everyone an opportunity to get to know this wonder woman we love to have back again and again. Let’s Get to Know Patty!

The Basics

Patty has been with Arthur Murray Dance Centers for 25 years. With her school in Laval Quebec she lives the next town over in downtown Montreal. Although her parents and family migrated from Italy to Canada, Patty was the first member of her family born in Canada. Patty_C.jpg

Life Before Arthur Murray

Being a dance teacher was never the plan per say, but the arts and dancing were always a big part of Patty’s life. Growing up, she did not get a lot of encouragement or funding to dance, so she found a way to fund herself. At age 12 she become the neighborhood babysitter and was able to make enough funds to take some dance and jazz classes.

As Patty moved into her teens, other opportunities to dance came up. As a member of an after school group, Patty would spend a lot of time at the music room. This group of the arts would spend time making music, learning dance numbers and creating comical sketches. Being a member taught her several things about leadership, responsibility and teaching. At age 17 the group was given a huge opportunity in the form of a grant to do their show around the country. It was the group’s responsibility to hire Canadian talent, create the show content and sell tickets as they toured the country. As a coordinator and dance director for the group it was Patty’s job to recruit dancers and create the show. The biggest highlight came when the group opened for the popular Canadian Rock band BTO (Bachman-Turner Overdrive) on Canada Day.

Joining the Arthur Murray Family

After finishing college, Patty went to York University to dance. She was the girl from the movie Flash Dance: young, curly haired and rebellious, a clear outlier in a world of proper ballerinas. After some time she learned it was not for her. With dreams of dancing put on hold, Patty found refuge dancing her evenings at the downtown salsa club to get her dance fix whenever she could. It was there that Patty was first discovered and in a short period of time, Patty went from dancing at the salsa club to teaching for Daniel Herouix.

For Patty, the draw to Arthur Murray was not only the opportunity to pursue what she loved, but also the fact that Arthur Murray is a global company with opportunity to teach all over the world. In addition, Daniel Herouix, as her franchisee, was the right fit for her because of his curiosity and openness to new ideas.

For those that have been lucky enough to work with Patty we want know your favorite Patty moment. Share below! Check back soon for a little Q&A with Patty!

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