Discussion in 'Swing Discussion Boards' started by Spitfire, Apr 8, 2011.
It's good to hear, as people simply have their own tastes...
This is why I don't understand it either. Dances are different, but they all accomplish the same thing.
I completely agree. And I have enjoyed navigating between dance scenes and enjoying the variety of different styles. I love how our studio emphasizes that variety...
I'm sure I'm not the only one here who tends to get bored with one style of dance. This is what I like about the ballroom world; the variety.
Yes indeed! :cheers:
And to think that the monthly swing dance held downtown here is now become more ECS. I attended this dance last Saturday and I had not been to one of these in six years and was rather surprised to see most people doing ECS and only a few of them doing Lindy. I shouldn't have been since I'm aware that the hard core Lindy dancers who attended these have moved on; many were students at the university who left after graduation.
Oh well, I wanted to test my ability to do whips that I know in WCS which in Lindy are known as throw outs and found I was able to do fairly well with it with those ladies who were familiar with Lindy.
A bit like me, but the reverse: I learned Lindy before WCS. Familiarity with another dance with 8-count basics helped me in my early attempts at WCS...
They're pretty much over at the national level - I remember a ton of trash talking round '02-'04, of which the only visible remnant today is the strictly challenge at the US Open. I don't miss it.
I found an article about conflict between WCS and Abstract Improv dancers. Unfortunately, I have not been part of this forum long enough to post links. If you go to Katherine Krok Eastvold's blog, look for an article called "The Time Has Come".
Here's that url, if anyone else is interested.
Welcome to DF yougotta.
Based on that content, Katherine sounds like a GSDTA trained West Coast instructor. Which is definately not a bad thing! I've seen similar - let's call it..... noting of deviations from "studio" West Coast Swing - going back to the 80s with Craig Hutchinson's Swing Manual. And that's about as far back as "West Coast Swing" was a national phenom.
Here's Kelly Buckwalter writing about how teachers are pressured to teach "hot" "flashy" moves.
http://westcoastswingamerica.com/kbtepid.htm from 1997
BTW, I don't think it's at all necessary to give something that already has a name "West Coast Swing" an adjective to clarify what you are talking about.
Huh? Like "Pure Bal"?
Now, if you want to have "Funky West Coast Swing", or "Improve WCS", sure.
She mentions the difficulty of learning WCS; of it taking 5-7 years lo learn back then. It reminds me of when I first started out in dancing years ago. The studio where I was taking my lessons was teaching only to advanced students which I did not know at the time, but was told this years later by one of the instructors I took lessons from.
From what I've seen of Abstract Improv, it doesn't have any discernable "swing" to it. But that doesn't really matter to me. I think that Abstract Improv dancers should be encouraged to learn good technique (at least to the point of being able to lead and follow the moves, minimizing the risk of injury). There are certainly very talented improv dancers who borrow from many dance styles and genres and combine them in (IMO) creative, entertaining ways. But they are applying solid dance fundamentals.
The word "freestyle" comes to mind here, but it already is used to describe other styles of dance and music. Maybe "freeform"?
The blog reminded me of a discussion we had here a few months ago: http://www.dance-forums.com/showthread.php?t=39153.
I have a couple of thoughts.
Although I tend to agree with Katherine's main points (i.e., the newer version is enough different from traditional WCS that it should be labeled something else and treated separately for competition and social dance), I think her prejudice against the new form is obvious. In my (extremely limited) experience, the proponents continued to emphasize connection and technique, they just messed with the things that make WCS unique (e.g., the slot, the anchor). The new form is not necessarily sloppy, uncontrolled, or off-balance.
I have heard that there was a controversy over the results of a recent competition in which a couple that danced the new style very well lost because they were disqualified ... because they did not meet the standard for a minimum amount of swing content in their dance.
Swing content in a swing competetion was discussed in something that Skippy Blair wrote about. Then, Hustle was being added (like I wrote, (sort of) the more things change...)
I guess if you are judging, and it's supposed to be a certain dance, you need guidelines that are clearly understood.
I'm challenging myself to discover and document any differences between "West Coast Swing" and the dance known as "Western Swing". How narrowly do you define them?
Defining something isn't exactly the same as regulating it; unless maybe you are competing.
Separate names with a comma.