On May 16, Juan Zamora will be 80 years old and he’ll celebrate the day with his wife, Asunción Dethorey, who shares his passion for dancing.
They used to go to social dances and dinners at the military club in the Palma district of Es Fortí and sometimes people asked Asunción to dance but she always refused because she didn’t know how to dance.
"There were Italian couples sports dancing and we liked those elegant movements," says Asunción. Later, Juan took dancing lessons at the Bat Club dance school which was run by Pepe Dols and Merche Sotelo and since then the couple have travelled all over the country to take part in dancing competitions.
Despite a few operations, Juan says no one can keep him off the dance floor.
"I have always been very athletic, but dancing gives us life as well as many good moments and friends wherever we go. We feel very loved,” confesses Juan who was a soldier by profession and arrived in Mallorca after his studies at the Naval School.
"I arrived in February 1962, then I was assigned to six communities, but in 1973 I settled in Palma."
Juan has a degree in Physical Education and taught at the Luis Vives school in Palma. He also led a Navy marathon team, refereed and a coached football, handball and volleyball.
On May 24, 1985 Juan met Asunción.
"He has a very good memory, there’s no date he doesn’t remember", says Asunción, who won several swimming titles as part of the Palma Swimming Club team when she was younger.
The Spanish Sports Dance Federation President Luis Vañó and Vice President Araceli Castaño, have paid tribute to Juan and Asunción on several occasions.
"One of the most emotional moments was in Oropesa de Mar during a competition," they recalled.
After a long hiatus due to the pandemic, the couple have now returned to dancing.
"During the confinement we didn’t even dance in the living room and we have recently returned to teaching with Spanish champion, Sergi Pons at the Academia De Ball Stil in Campos," says Asunción.
"Before participating we looked into each other's eyes and squeezed each other's hands,” explains Asunción, who’s also passionate about fashion and has a wide and varied wardrobe to choose from for her appearances.
The Balearic Federation is staging a day of dance, at the Toni Pizà Sports Centre, in sa Indioteria on May 16, which will include the XXVI Balearic Federation Trophy of Ball Esportiu and a memorial to María del Rocío Ramos, who died recently.
That's also Juan Zamora's 80th birthday and a special tribute also being prepared. He and Asunción are living proof that dancing keeps you fit, no matter what age you are.