Garry Portugal is known to many as El Pachanguero or El Hombre Ritmo, and is considered one of New York & New Jersey’s top dancers and choreographers in Salsa, Mambo, Bachata, Pachanga and other dance styles. Growing up with the influence of his Cuban roots in music and dance, Garry knew that a future in dance was inevitable. He was introduced to the “On2” circuit by a friend that invited him to attend a social in NYC. He immediately fell in love and began to seek out the best instructors to help him turn his love into skill. Garry also began to seek training in many genres of dance outside of his traditional Latin styles including ballet, jazz, modern, lyrical, hip-hop, hustle and west coast swing.
With over 13 years of professional dance experience, Garry has worked along side many great dance professionals such as: Eddie Torres – The Mambo King, Griselle Ponce, Freddie Rios, Mike Ramos, Albert Torres, and many others. Garry has successfully graced many stages over the years, including one of the largest in the world – Madison Square Garden. His performance credits with Salsa superstars include Johnny Pacheco, Ismael Miranda, Cheo Feliciano, Eddie Palmieri, Jerry Rivera, La India, Eddie Santiago, Tito Rojas, El Gran Combo, Larry Harlow and his Latin Legends Band, and The Spanish Harlem Orchestra. Garry has also had the honor and privilege of performing for the U.S. President, Barack Obama. In addition, he has had the opportunity to showcase his talents in musical theatre and on national cable television.
In Garry’s professional dancing career, he has been featured in congresses, festivals, special events & dance venues throughout the United States, and has traveled internationally to countries such as: Canada, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, Mexico, Italy, Turkey, Trinidad, Sweden, Japan and Great Britain to teach and perform. Presently, Garry directs his very own dance company called Los Pachangueros. Created in early 2012, Los Pachangueros have already been featured in numerous congresses and events both nationally and internationally. Los Pachangueros have established themselves as one of the premiere all male groups in the salsa community. Among their many achievements, Los Pachangueros were given the honor of being the closing act at a number of Salsa Congresses and Festivals. They were also selected to participate in a special tribute showcase to the Palladium Mambo Legends at the 2013 Los Angeles Salsa Congress. Garry is also the Director of the Alma Latina Franchise, ALMA NYC.
Having been a school teacher, Garry’s passion for dance is evident in and indicative of his love for teaching and training students and aspiring dancers. A piece of advice Garry wishes to impart to his students is to “learn, train and practice, but above all, let your dancing reflect who you are!”