Culture: The Zumba Uprising

For certain members of the tony Sports Club/LA, a fitness instructor is the new cause célèbre.

When Monday finally rolled around, about 60 Malzone supporters showed up for the meeting. As it turned out, the PowerPoint presentation wasn’t necessary. Far more powerful were the tearful testimonials attesting to how Malzone had changed members’ lives. Wioletta Zywina, proprietor of the Italian restaurant Da Vinci, was among the speakers: “I own a restaurant and I deal with customer service on a daily basis,” she says. “I know good customer service, and I know a good employee. So I kind of stood up and said to the club COO and manager, ‘You should be proud of yourself that you have an employee in this club who can create so much emotion.’”

Korcak felt confident after the meeting, but she still hadn’t heard anything by Wednesday. That afternoon, she e-mailed Million to ask if she could expect to see Malzone at the next day’s Zumba class. Million’s assistant called Korcak later that day. “I’m happy to tell you Alexa will be teaching tomorrow,” she said.

Even now, the members aren’t sure why Malzone was going to leave — if she was fired or if she really resigned. When asked, the instructor deferred to SCLA’s publicist, Kate Conti, who said the club had wanted to retain Malzone all along. “She commutes from Rhode Island,” says Conti. “There was a time when we were talking back and forth, the company and Alexa, just to see what situation works the best.” As for the Monday meeting, Conti says the goal was simply “to allay concerns and make sure they knew the company was dedicated to having Alexa as an employee.”

Whatever the case, Malzone’s admirers are thrilled to have her back. SCLA didn’t make an official announcement until that Friday, but by then the good news had already spread via Twitter and text messages. One of the agitators updated her Facebook status as soon as she heard. “We proved that when people unite together in voice and reason on behalf of something good, great results are achieved.”

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  • john

    Why was she going to leave? If she loved it there so much and the members loved her so much, why was there any reason to leave? I don’t think we are getting the full story here.

  • john

    Why was she going to leave? If she loved it there so much and the members loved her so much, why was there any reason to leave? I don’t think we are getting the full story here.

  • john

    Why was she going to leave? If she loved it there so much and the members loved her so much, why was there any reason to leave? I don’t think we are getting the full story here.

  • john

    Why was she going to leave? If she loved it there so much and the members loved her so much, why was there any reason to leave? I don’t think we are getting the full story here.

  • Maija

    Fascinating that Boston Magazine wasn’t able to discern (or chose not to print) the story behind the story. I live on the North Shore, have never stepped foot in that facility, and even I know, mo

  • Maija

    Fascinating that BM wasn’t able to discern (or chose not to print) the story behind the story. I live on the North Shore, have never stepped foot into that facility, and even I know, more or less, w

  • jjake.peanuts@hotmail.com

    Ms. Malzone was outed due to inappropreate behavior, which she then covered up. Dirty Dancing is the cleanest part of this story!

  • masimo@hotmail.com

    As a member of this gym, I have heard rumors that Ms. Malzone threatened our gym with an unfounded lawsuit, appearances can be deceiving, she may have a loyal following but this is an employee who is

  • masimo@hotmail.com

    As a member of this gym, I have heard rumors that Ms. Malzone threatened our gym with an unfounded lawsuit, appearances can be deceiving, she may have a loyal following but this is an employee who is

  • diana@hotmail.com

    If the above stories are true, I’m quitting this gym, I don’t need someone acting like a spoiled drama queen in the gym I’m trying to relax and work out at. Go be an actress in LA, if you want to b

  • mike@hotmail.com

    How do we know these advocates know the whole story, maybe they jumped the gun in backing her. It sounds like the gym had no choice but to reinstate her, it seems she would have gone into litigation w

  • debbie

    I think as members we need to find out the truth, who covered up what and why, I don’t want my gym staff lying to me, we need to find exactly what she is covering up.

  • Alexa

    Being a member, I don’t like a cover up, if there was a wrong doing, fire this instructor, DO NOT cover a story up, we members deserve the truth!

  • Chris

    I’ve seen employees get fired…if she really did something wrong, they would have fired her.

  • d

    Lets not forget about the other roomers that make this issue look like preschool. This club is full of scandals.

  • Jane

    What are the other rumors going on in the club, I did hear a rumor from another member that this instructor has a shady background, possibly in some kind of adult industry, that’s not the kind of les

  • xela

    “Adult entertainment?” If that’s true it’s obvious why her “advocates” revolted. Who wouldn’t want the “adult entertainer” teaching dance class. Boston is so uptight & conservative. Lo

  • Debbie

    I would like a follow up piece from this writer explaining why this instructor was going to resign, it’s a huge missing piece of this story.

  • Samantha

    I’m a member of the gym, I have seen this woman, women keep your men away, she looks like she’s in some adult business. Ladies beware of her!

  • Samantha

    This article never states why she was resigning, was she being forced out, I would like to see a follow up story before I pass judgement on this.

  • D

    We the members asked her to take us into the studio to zumba, and she got in trouble. Upper management used it as a way to get her out. She didn’t do anything inappropriate.

  • Joanna

    Because members asked to be taken into the gym is why she was being let go, something’s missing from this story, can someone explain a little more please.

  • Gianna

    This woman is so wonderful, she’s just the best, being a friend of her’s is like such a privilage, she is just like the coolest, bestest person in like the whole world.

  • Diane

    Is there any more to this story? What happened to the instructor, was she fired?

  • Rate Your

    We love instructors that stir it up. One of our bloggers recently attended Alexa’s spin class, which is also heavily influenced by Zumba. Check it out here!

    http://www.rateyourburn.com/blog/post/2012/03/07/class-review-rev-with-alexa-malzone-the-sports-club-la.aspx