Gemini Salsa is the teaching arm of Gemini Entertainment and takes pride in instructing and educating people in the knowledge, beauty and culture of the salsa community. The name Gemini was born from the legend symbolized by Castor and Pollux, the heavenly twins on their wonderful merry dance through life. Gemini’s adore excitement and fun, are curious, youthful and optimistic, all the traits that salsa itself embodies.
Gemini Entertainment was introduced to the salsa community in 2004 and has since been competing internationally while maintaining the title of the undefeated champion in Portland, OR. Gemini is internationally recognized thanks to the quality of its performances and teaching.
Gemini has also produced the first full-color bilingual magazine dedicated entirely to salsa (Pure Salsa Magazine). Gemini has also produced the Largest International Portland Salsa Congress to date, associated with the Salsa’s biggest promoter Albert Torres as well as the Walt Disney World Salsa Championships and ESPN.
Internationally recognized Professional Dancer, Choreographer, Instructor, and Promoter, Javier Solis, is from Merida, Yucatan, Mexico. He founded the Portland Salsa Congress in 2005. It has since developed into the premier competitive Salsa Congress in the Pacific Northwest.
Javier has been busy founding many more Congresses including in Boise and Merida, Mexico. He has partnered with the most respected names in Salsa including Albert Torres, to ensure every dancer has the most amazing, satisfying, experience.
Gemini has opened and performed for many major Latin Salsa Stars including Oscar De Leon, Victor Manuel and Gilberto Santarosa.
Gemini and his team have also done many half-time performances for the Portland Trail Blazers and was a judge for the Blazer's Dancer try-outs.
Gemini made history worldwide, dancing on the Great Wall of China in 2007. He was invited to tour to Beijing to demonstrate and teach Salsa dancing. Her had such a great time, and was so well-received, he plans to make another tour back to China later this year.
His creativity and keen eye for picking up details, assist him, his partners and dance team, in producing complex, energetic and exciting choreography.
Javier has traveled worldwide and trained amazing teams. He looks forward to teaching for many more years!
Kara Girod Shuster
Kara (Girod) Shuster was born and raised in Hillsboro Oregon where she trained in ballet and modern at the Northwest Conservatory of Dance. While in junior high and high school, Kara spent her summers dancing at Joffrey Midwest, and the Joffrey School of Ballet in New York under such masters as Ceyhun Ozsoy and Winthrop Corey. Moving to LA in 2005 to pursue her education in dance at Loyola Marymount University, Kara fell in love with the contemporary aesthetics of post-modern technique, improvisation, release work, and yoga. She also received her certification in group fitness and mat Pilates through AFAA and began teaching group Pilates at the Fritz B Burns Recreational Facility. After graduating with her Bachelor of Arts with a major in dance and minor in philosophy, Kara spent a year in Portland as an apprentice for BodyVox Dance Company while also teaching classes in the metro area in ballet and modern. In 2009, Kara achieved her yoga certification through Yoga Unions Teacher Certification course and began teaching yoga while also integrating her Asana knowledge into her dance classes. Later in 2009, Kara moved to the Bay Area, studying under artists such as Robert Moses and Summer Lee Rhatigan while interning with LEVYdance. She was called back home to Portland to join Bodyvox and Bodyvox Too in their next two seasons. Most recently, Kara has been studying and teaching at Northwest Dance Project, while also taking time to travel around the country, working with great new artists such as Gregory Dolbashian and Marina Mascarell. Always coming back home to Portland, in May of 2012, Kara celebrated the opening of the co-operative Yoga and Movement space in SE Portland, The Anahata Co-Op, where she can play and explore with her community. Kara has fallen in love with salsa and has been training and teaching with Gemini Salsa for the past year and is very excited for what the future holds.
My name is Cynthia; I am originally from Puerto Rico. I am a mom of 2 kids. Married to a wonderful man for about 11 years now, who support me on everything I do. Being a military family is the reason how we get here. From Puerto Rico, we went to live in Alaska for 3 years, and we have been living in Idaho for about 6 years now.
Music has been in my life all the time. My parents were musicians. My sisters and I learned how to play some instruments, and we sing too. We sang at church as a trio and every where we use to go, people start asking us to sing.
As a Boricua, Salsa music is inside of us. Curiously, when I started dancing, first thing I learned to dance was Cumbia. One day some asked me to dance Salsa, and for my surprise, it was in “One” style. It was at that moment that I realized that I was not so good on Salsa dancing. I didn’t give up. I start watching and following, and that’s how I dance the way I do today. Been Gemini’s student has polished more on me. Javier has taught me techniques that I never thought I was able to do.
Every Friday night I go dancing and I have an amazing time every single time I am at the dance floor. It helps me disconnect from work and start a great weekend with my family. That’s an important part because I am IN LOVE WITH MY FAMILY!
Gemini has traveled world-wide!
Gemini has made numerous television appearances on:
Gemini has performed for: