Watching Matilda Klein waiting in the wings to be called forward for her solo performance in this YouTube video, one would never expect the 94-year-old woman to have the energy it takes to be a ballroom dancing star.
But once Klein takes to the stage — slowly ridding herself of her walker — she is simply astounding.
Moving with the spunk and agility of a woman half her age, she dances circles around her much younger dance partner and instructor Danny Maloney.
In an interview with Ballroom Fantasy at the Southern States DanceSport competition, Klein — who is affectionately known as Tilly — said that she has been dancing with Maloney for 11 years.
“I just love the feel of it. It keeps me alive,” she said, adding that she’s been dancing all her life.
“She’s an inspiration to me every time I dance with her,” Maloney told usarsarollerskaters.org.
Klein, who is from Boca Raton, Fla., and Maloney frequently participate in ballroom dancing events and often wow the judges.
Last August, they won their heat at the Florida State DanceSport competition where they danced the Salsa.
“She’s a great student,” Maloney told Ballroom Fantasy. “It’s always been easy with Tilly… She loves it.”
Clearly, her passion is infectious. In the video, watch as the crowd gets to their feet to cheer for Klein’s lovely performance.
People who have watched the viral video have been equally enthusiastic about Klein’s dancing prowess. “I gotta say, kudos to her,” said one commenter. “I’m only 60, but I hope I can her energy and grace when and if I get to be her age.” One blogger, SpiderFarmer, who posted the video on her site summed it up nicely. “This is the most wonderful thing. May we all spend our lives dancing,” she wrote.
– Huffington Post