2015 Sage Aware Nominee “Outstanding Dance Educator”

René Thompson, with over 30 years of professional dance performance and teaching, brings expertise in Cuban dance and Cuban rhythms to the Twin Cities that is rarely available outside of Cuba.

Dance is not just about moving your feet. The music has a question. Your body has an answer.  -René Dennis Thompson

René has been honored by the Federal Executive Board, USDA, Harrington Foundation, and Minneapolis Community College for his informative and insightly talks and demonstrations about the rich history of his Afro-Cuban roots.

René danced with Gloria Estefan for a number of years. He has worked with Will Smith, Madonna and many others.

René was awarded with the “Pioneer of Salsa” bringing Salsa Dancing to the Twin Cities years ago.  Teachers around the city and country have been influenced by his unique style and love of music and dance.

René is an integral part of the SHIFT Fitness & Massage Team.

His dance varies in speed and intensity which is a form of Interval Training. Dance helps with Balance, Flexibility with low-impact help to build up bones to fight off Osteoporosis. His cultural understanding of dance and movement is shared in classes which makes the dances so much more fun.  In addition it does get the heart rate moving so much that you forget that you exercising.