Becoming Ginger Rogers Book

Becoming Ginger Rogers is the story of one woman’s inspiring and uplifting journey to reclaim her life during the dispiriting days of New York City post-9/11, the unraveling of a successful business she co-founded with 12 other colleagues, and the death of her beloved husband after a long illness. Patrice Tanaka shares her very personal story of how at age 50 she started ballroom dance lessons to satisfy a lifelong dream of dancing like Ginger Rogers and, in so doing, found her way to unimaginable joy.

This book is, in part, a memoir of a Japanese-American woman born and raised in Hawaii who fulfilled her dream of “making it” in Manhattan; it’s also a voyeuristic glimpse into the world of competitive ballroom dancing; and a business book about the lessons learned from ballroom dancing that made Patrice a better partner and a smarter CEO.

    Patrice Tanaka

    If, like the author, you’ve spent the past 20-30+ years working, raising your family and caring for ill or infirmed loved ones and, in the process, neglected your own needs and desires, this book is for you. You’re likely exhausted, unexcited and uninspired by your own life and see no light at the end of the tunnel. Becoming Ginger Rogers may be that light.

    In her book, Patrice talks about:

    • How to reclaim, re-energize and re-excite yourself about life by engaging in an activity that has nothing to do with what you do everyday
    • How to “reschedule yourself” back into your own life as the first step toward reclaiming your life
    • How lessons learned in ballroom dance such as the importance of being fully present–mind, body and spirit–have applications beyond the ballroom floor in helping you achieve greater happiness and success in your personal and professional life
    • How to let go and follow someone else’s lead. This is not necessarily a second-best solution, but a strategy for winning!
    • How “overrated” and inhibiting perfectionism is; more important is to live your life fully, fearlessly and to hold nothing back.
    • How visualizing your dreams is the first step in manifesting them
    • How living every moment of your life in a way that is fulfilling in and of itself, and not dependent on some future you may not have, is the best way to live and to be prepared to die even if you have little advance warning like the nearly 3,000 people who perished on 9/11
    Becoming Ginger Rogers Logo

    About Patrice Tanaka

    Born and raised in Hawaii, Patrice graduated from the University of Hawaii in 1974 and following that worked as an editor at Hawaii Press Newspapers in Honolulu and later served as PR Director of the Hotel Inter-Continental Maui in Wailea. In 1979, she fulfilled a life-long, whatcanbe℠ dream of moving to New York City. Patrice joined Jessica Dee Communications, a PR agency she helped to build, which was acquired by Chiat/Day Advertising in 1987. A widow since 2003, Patrice lives in Manhattan. She devotes much of her free time to serving on the boards of non-profit organizations dedicated to helping women and girls, including the Girl Scout Council of Greater New York, the Family Violence Prevention Fund, the American Friends of Phelophepa (the South African health care train) and Asian Women in Business. She also serves on the Past Presidents Council of New York Women in Communications and is a former trustee and member of the Women’s Forum New York. Patrice is also a competitive ballroom dancer and avid tennis player. Her book entitled, Becoming Ginger Rogers…How Ballroom Dancing Made Me a Happier Woman, a Better Partner and a Smarter CEO, was published in September 2011 by BenBella Books.

    Join us as we interviewed Patrice Tanaka to hear about her book Becoming Ginger Rogers from the fall Ballroom Box. In this delightful interview we hear about her life purpose and how this book was a result of sharing the joy and lessons that ballroom dancing brought to her life with others. Patrice shares a fun dance memory, favorite teachers like Pierre Dulaine, Tony Scheppler, Tomas, JT Thomas and Emmanuel Pierre-Antoine and her support for Dancing Classrooms

    Dancing Classrooms mission is to cultivate essential life skills in children through the joyful art and practice of social dance. With the vision to create schools and communities where every child is connected, respected and given an environment in which to thrive. 

    We were thankful for the opportunity to support at least one student this past fall. Be sure to visit the Dancing Classrooms website to learn more and give.

    We had our fair share of technical difficulties left from a recent tornado in our area and the normal busy times of holidays, business and dance competition schedules. We are thankful for Patrice and her time to share with us the joy that she has found in ballroom dancing and the affect it has had on her life. 

    Note from Duffy(the interviewer):  I have been following Dancing Classrooms since watching the movie, Take the Lead with Antonio Banderas and the documentary Mad Hot Ballroom. They are doing amazing work to transform the lives of kids. Just as I have experienced the gift and transformation that dance brings it is so fun to support an organization that is teaching dance to the next generation.  

    I researched and read many books before deciding on Patrice’s book. I chose her book as I was thinking about our box subscribers. I felt that it was spot on with encouragement and stories that anyone taking lessons and competing in ballroom dancing could relate to. I enjoyed reading her dance story and how she took the lessons she is learning and applied them to business and personal life. I was thrilled to find that she is connected to Dancing Classrooms and some amazing teachers. I had the honor to meet Emmanuel Pierre-Antoine as a vendor at one of his ballroom competitions a couple of years ago. He was truly delightful, present and real. His smile and generosity were sincere and of course his dancing was jaw dropping AMAZING! 



    There is only one left in stock!

    Our 2021 Fall Box – Relax and Recharge

    Dancers work hard to compete and prepare dances. We want to equip you to let your hair down, relax and recharge. Enjoy these items in the fall box.

    Becoming Ginger Rogers  – Written by Patrice Tanaka, this is one woman’s inspiring and uplifting story to reclaim her life after 9/11 through a lifelong dream of learning to dance.

    Pin Frisker – Time to let your hair down without losing your mind with bobby pins everywhere. This little tool is great at finding all the remaining hair pins and then keep them in the little pot.

    Nail Wraps   Treat yourself to a little sparkle with nail wraps from Ma Soriee. Use these wraps to complete a look for competition or give every day some extra glam.Assorted colors and glitter.

    Power Bank – Access to plugs are short in a busy ballroom. Use this power bank to keep your phone charged while traveling and dancing. iPhone Lightening adapter included.

    Apple Rumba Rooibus Tea    from DancingOx Coffee  is sure to add   rumba rhythms to your tea experience. A fall blend of rooibos, cinnamon and apple spice. Rooibus tea is known to offer anti-inflammatory, antiviral and antimutagenic qualities and is rich in antioxidants. 

    Makeup Eraser®- #1 sustainable makeup remover in the world. Erase ALL Makeup With JUST Water! Including waterproof mascara, eyeliner, foundation, lipstick, & more! 

    Clay Soap Set – Custom and Handmade by Emagine Shop, these soaps each have their own properties to cleanse. Activated Charcoal, Bentonite and Rose Kaolin Clay formed in gem stoned shapes.

    Balance Yoga Flow – Relax and breathe through these poses to help build and maintian balance. Curated by Rave Family Yoga. Box subscribers receive access to 4 weeks of online yoga classes.


    Holiday Ballroom Box

    The Ballroom Box is a subscription service that sends a box of goodies and tools to dancers each season of the year. We work hard to put together resources and products to equip and inspire dancers.

    The Holiday box is available for both men and women and perfect for gift giving season.