Meet New Dance Instructor Jean Marcley

Line Dancing Instructor Jean MarclayA recent Manatee County resident, Jean Marcley, is a retired senior who has taught line dancing for nearly 10 years. She currently is facilitating a five-week Creative Aging line dancing class, designed for ages 55 and over, at Downtown Central Library that meets Fridays, 10 to 11:30 AM. Referring to the class as an “Ultra-Extreme” beginners, Marcley has eliminated steps that place unnecessary stress on knees and hips.

Marcley’s focus is on fun and simple to help participants feel comfortable and confident. She uses music from a variety of genres, including country, old rock and roll and Gospel. The classes have brought a consistently big group of participants who already have learned several dances.

What makes Marcley’s dance class a little unusual is that she teaches by sound, having been legally blind since the age of 11. Her seeing-eye dog, Phyllis, normally can be found under one of the auditorium tables during the classes.

Marcley has always enjoyed dancing but didn’t start teaching line dancing until she and her husband became RVers in 2009 and stayed in a little burg in Arizona called Brenda. She loved teaching that class so much that she taught  for an additional eight years.

“Everyone told me I was a great teacher and that was all the encouragement I needed,” said Marcley.

Marcley also does stand-up comedy, having performed at VFWs and bars in Arizona.

“I love making people laugh. It started when I was a girl imitating comedians on TV,” said Marcley.

Marcley recently took a comedy class with her daughter, Jennifer, at McCurdy’s in Sarasota and was able to perform on stage in front of a live audience as part of the class graduation. For now, her stand-up material does not include her dance life.

“I just haven’t figured out how to combine them or if I even want to. I do sing, though, and that a part of one of my routines,” said Marcley.

Whether you are a seasoned line dancer or have never line danced before, you are welcome to join the class as space allows. Please email Jyna Johnson to reserve your spot.

See video clips of class on Manatee Libraries' You Tube Channel.