Swing Discussion Boards > Ceroc Teaching

Discussion in 'Swing Discussion Boards' started by Dancelf, Mar 9, 2009.

  1. kayak

    kayak Active Member

    Dave's description was interesting. Probably every country western bar and salsa club in the US uses the beginner class, break, intermediate class, dance with "taxi" dancers concept. Give Ceroc dancers a Coors or Bud and we here at Dance Forums just solved all the world's cultural divides :razz:
  2. Albanaich

    Albanaich New Member

    I wonder where the idea came from. . . .. . .

    Steve, I'll give you an example of lead and follow in Ceroc. The last few weeks I've been learning Ocho's side Ocho's and so on in AT. Last week I thought of having a go at leading them in Ceroc.

    I choose a good partner and although she had very seen one before, let alone done an Ocho she picked up the idea after a couple of tries.

    I often do the same with WCS moves in Ceroc, if I can figure out how to lead it with someone who has no idea what is happening - I've learnt to lead it.
  3. Dave Bailey

    Dave Bailey New Member

    To be fair, I've done very few b/r classes. But they mainly seemed pattern-focussed, albeit at a more technical level. Not much about connection, for example.

    Salsa classes - I've done hundreds. And there's no such thing as a trained salsa teacher, really.

    Yeah, but you can say that about any partner dance really.

    OK, Franck does teach more lead-and-follow stuff than average Ceroc class, but it's still very limited.

    Whereas many AT classes are nothing but lead-and-follow.
  4. Dave Bailey

    Dave Bailey New Member

    Oooh, Tango :)

    This "Cerochoes" article might be useful to you.

    Once you can lead an ocho on a beginner MJ-er, first time out, then you're getting good :D
  5. Captain Jep

    Captain Jep New Member

    Hi, folks, just lookin' in

    I'm interested in this idea of leading ochoes in Ceroc. Isnt the essence of Ceroc push and pull? In which case presumably you are leading with your arms not your chest?
  6. Steve Pastor

    Steve Pastor Moderator Staff Member

    Yup, pick a good partner who won't freak out when you ask her to move in a direction that she isn't familiar with, and you can do mixing and matching that you learn in different "dances".
    Or, as you have noted, pick a beginner who doesn't have a bunch of programmed ways of moving and a good sense of rhythm, balance, etc, and you can do the same.
    No argument there.
    Most "social AT" can be done with good basics and simply following your center, if you follow. But, most people don't teach that way.
    I pulled a fast one on one of my long term partners in night club two step. She did fine, and said, "Is that one of your Tango moves?"
    (Wish she would break down and do WCS)

    When you learn to dance at a country western place (I wasn't the first one to bring it up), or the countless places in small towns (or non towns) across the US, or in many clubs in cities, you pretty much learn absolutely nothing about technique.
    This has been going on a long time.
    I didn't learn any technique at that place at the crossroads with the gas station and two bars, or in Estacada, OR, or at the truck stop in Troutdale, or the Drum in Gresham.
    Just dance, man.
    Maybe we should incorporate it.
    No wait, "Blues Dancing" has a better ring to it.

    So, what happened was that as I tried to get better, my standards for teachers became higher. And I'm pretty sure my dancing has gotten better, too. And now, I can not only do it, but I understand why it works and help someone else get it, too (if they want to go there, which most people don't)
  7. Dave Bailey

    Dave Bailey New Member

    Go away :p

    It's sort-of based around an accordion motion, yes - well, in my view anyway.

    That's the main problem - people leading with their hands. Of course, proper dancers lead with their centres. Errr, wherever that is...
  8. Dave Bailey

    Dave Bailey New Member

  9. kayak

    kayak Active Member

    My understanding on the CW side is a bunch of ballroom instructors decided about 20ish years ago to switch to country dancing for a more relaxed atmosphere. So they took the totally casual country dance world by storm and really modernized the dance style.

    I am not sure when the UCWDC and Swing Dance Council teamed up? They seem to me to have pretty similar ideas about dance. So they are a pretty natural fit together.

    Perhaps our dance historians, Steve and TangoTime, can fill us in with fun details about if the founders of your Ceroc movement were in the same circles as the CW crew? One hugely obvious difference from your descriptions is CW dance pays a lot of attention to good footwork and body flight even on the recreational side.
  10. Captain Jep

    Captain Jep New Member

    So should you - last time I looked this was a "swing" discussion board ..:p


    In which case , why are you getting "good" if you can lead cerochoes? Just askin' ...
  11. Dancelf

    Dancelf Member

    That was the kind of answer I was looking for Dave, thanks.

    MJ sounds like it fits the same sort of niche that east coast or western swing might fill (give the dancer one hour of instruction, and they can have fun for the rest of the evening on their own), and Ceroc is a specific branding that treats MJ as an end unto itself.
  12. Captain Jep

    Captain Jep New Member

    I'm just an occasional tourist with ceroc (maybe 4 lessons in last 2 years) but I'm surprised at the level of scorn some of the posters are showing to it.

    Yes, OK, it isnt the world's most sophisticated dance but it does fill a gap in musical tastes. Let's face it, most of us love to boogie to Motown classics or to Rock n' Roll. However, after a certain age, the only time you go to a nightclub is if a) you're dragged in kicking and screaming or b) it's the Christmas party. So Ceroc venues are the answer. You dont have to hang out with a bunch of teenagers. And you can enjoy dancing to tunes which yes, are cheesy, but are also classics.

    In my view, going to a ceroc class is like going to a disco. Or almost like it. With ceroc, you can get home by 11 for your cup of cocoa and a good bed time story :p
  13. Steve Pastor

    Steve Pastor Moderator Staff Member

    Hope no one thinks I'm scorning anything. I'm pointing out what I see as parallels between some of what Albanaich is describing, and what goes on over here. And I'm also offering reasons why maybe Ceroc hasn't caught on here.

    Some people think country western is more ballroom now. I think the ballroom people stick out like sore thumbs in certain CW environments. Probably other places they don't.
    The orginal Western Swing, now known as West Coast Swing (now there's that Other, New Western Swing) had nothing to do with Ceroc, and started with the Arthur Murray Studios. I'm having "fun" tracing the changes in the dance during the early stages. But it's like working with just a few snapshots from over two decades.
    Don't know who first danced WCS/Western Swing to "country" music, but it happened in the 50s during it's first decade of documented existence.
    (I doubt that anyone never threw the woman outside of the slot as Lauré Haile wrote in her Bronze level syllabus, until they were told that was what Western Swing was. And it's beginning to look like even Skippy was given information some that doesn't square with the written information.)
    Country Western Two Step has so many variations (I've seen three or four descriptions of Texas Two Step which are not the same, each claiming to be THE Texas Two Step.)
    Schottische came from Europe, as did waltz and polka.
    Line dancing? Well, it didn't come from Europe.
    NC2S came from Buddy Schwimmer.
    I'm wondering if Disco didn't have a big impact on the new CW "Western Swing", since the Western craze followed the Disco craze pretty closely.
    You can read about Ceroc in wikipedia http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ceroc
  14. jophil28

    jophil28 New Member

    You just proved my point.
  15. jophil28

    jophil28 New Member

    "accordion motion " , so that is what they are doing. " impersonating an accordion ". What next ?t the "trombone motion" ?

    IF you took some legit dance lessons from a Dancesport or RAD teacher he/she could explain the concept and show you how to correctly use your center .
  16. jophil28

    jophil28 New Member

    Go to Youtube and type "Slavik".. Watch half a dozen clips. THAT is how any Latin Dance dance style should be done.
    MJ dancers - watch how he moves his weight and controls his upper body.
  17. jwlinson

    jwlinson Member

    Oops, confusion in the translation! I was talking about the original American version of foxtrot and what it's done here in the US. Most people who want to learn to dance socially are taught foxtrot since it's easy to learn. It still has a large base since the basics are so easy. We see it at many weddings, anniversaries, etc., and it's also found its way into most country dance halls next to its Texas two-step relative.

    My point was in regards to Albanaich's comment about ballroom dances not expanding and therefore dying, as compared to Ceroc's 25 years. Foxtrot began here in the US approx. 90 years ago, and since that time it has gone from its original roots with Vernon and Irene Castle and Harry Fox, to Arthur Murray and his "Magic Step," to several offshoots such as slowfox, quickstep, Texas two-step, etc. This is an example of a ballroom dance that is not dying, and *is* growing and expanding (over here, at least).

    He likes his style of dancing, and I like mine. Like I said earlier, from what I've seen of MJ it's not my thing. If he likes it, great, but don't tell me dances that have been around for as long as ballroom dances have are "dying and not expanding" when compared to a dance that's only been around since the 80's.

    He also tries to make the point that, "It's ballroom and other kinds of dance that will adapt to Ceroc - not the other way round." Is this not contradictory by nature? Ceroc incorporates moves from other dances, right? In the videos I've seen thus far, I've picked out swing/jive, salsa, various other Latin steps, tango, etc. How can those other dances be "adapting to" Ceroc, when Ceroc is taking steps from those other dances instead of the other way around? Those other dances are structured dances, and how can a structured dance adapt to a dance that's supposedly freeform?

    It's great he's enthusiastic about a dance he loves doing, but that dance isn't going to conquer the world...
  18. jwlinson

    jwlinson Member

    This is very true!

    Most of the dance venues around here are country. At some, the people there are doing the typical sway side-to-side thing people do when they don't know how to dance any other way. We're doing our foxtrot, waltz, nightclub 2-step, etc. and stick out. At others, the dancers have taken classes and are doing foxtrots, Texas two-steps, swing dances, etc., and we fit in a bit better.
  19. jwlinson

    jwlinson Member

    Slavik's awesome.
  20. Angel HI

    Angel HI Well-Known Member

    Almost accurate, but really unimportant to the discussion...Ceroc is an abbreviation for the French phrase, "C'est Rock". The dance came first; then the org. MJ, the Brit term for Ceroc, came aft.
    There are more learned swing historians on the DF, but I believe the progression was, Shag - Push Whip - West Coast. CW Swing, actually being birthed by, or related to, Lindy. Unsure of that, though...vaguely remember from a swing course of years ago.

    The current NC2, yes, came from Buddy in the early '90s, but remember that the original NC2 was actually a CW Waltz danced to 4/4 music.

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