General Dance Discussion > Engineers and dancing

Discussion in 'General Dance Discussion' started by kansas49er, Aug 24, 2005.

  1. kansas49er

    kansas49er New Member

    Just a curious thought? How many of you dancers are engineers and how does it affect your dancing? Do you subbscribe to the theory that peoples personality molds their career , or the career molds the personality? I only ask this afer a semiprivate with another instructor, and that instructor whodid not know me personally at the time made the comment "must be an engineer" about me to my wife. Dead on hit. This was some time ago, but it just jumped into my brain today (sigh--another senior moment) Seems to me that engineers grasp the mechanics and physics, as well as the intricate patterns of dance, fairly quickly. However, the execution of the dance and the "instantaneus creativity" necessary for good leading is lacking. Sometimes, without practice, social graces are not the best also. Whaddya think?
  2. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    you, my friend, are DEAD husband was an engineer before he became a lawyer...

    he is excellent at the abstract vision stuff...the ability to execute difficult patterns....but definately falls into the analysis paralysis mode....I could elaorate on this for pages as well as the social graces thing but somehow I sense you alrady know...and I don't want to offend any less self-reflective engineers out there :wink: let me just say that the worst place for my husband is on a crowded dance floor because he cannot calculate all of the variables....and let me also say that I LOVE MY ENGINEER
  3. leftfeetnyc

    leftfeetnyc New Member

    I'm not an engineer...but most of my North East dance friends are or are high level IT guys. Most are computer people. A few financial guys as well. I find that dancers tend to be in field where they actually have to do a lot of thinking.
  4. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    let me also say that it drives him nuts when I post without checking my spelling :oops:
  5. dTas

    dTas New Member

    that's funny... :lol:

    living in Microsoft/Boeing land i see a lot of engineers and programmers and there is definitely a mentality associated with that type of person. being one myself has sure helped me in understanding and relating dance information.

    i see that "engineers" (aka technical people) tend to get too bogged down in the details and take things too literally. i think its more the nature of the person rather than the job. if you are "engineeringly" inclined then you will tend towards those occupations that are labeled "engineer".

    i think dancing, however, is a great balance for engineeers. it gives an opportunity to work the creative side and also work the body, not just the mind and fingers (keyboard). it sure does help me.
  6. ratherbdancing

    ratherbdancing New Member

    When I danced on a college team, there were always tons of people who were getting their degree for engineering that took lessons.
  7. africana

    africana New Member

    just doesn't apply to me, do just fine in both worlds.

    i suppose i'm one of the few anomalies

    I should add though that danccing has made everything else so much less exciting....I love the ability to create on a whim, be spontaneous, and follow intuition that more often than not results in interesting ways of expression
  8. wyllo

    wyllo New Member

    This is soo my partner. He's an architect not an engineer, but he knows the technique book cold and exactly where he should be at all times and he analyzes which muscles should be engaged to cause certain movements, which is great. But sometimes he can't seem to just DANCE!
  9. lynn

    lynn New Member

    i guess it's b/c of the assumption that if you're an engineer, you're automatically categorized as the "analytical and logical". On the other end of the spectrum are those who are creative and artistic. While many of us have a tendency to fall on either end of the spectrum, that is not to say someone can't be analytical/logical and creative/artistic all at once.
  10. dickda

    dickda New Member


    I was an engineer and scientist for several decades.

    I learn better in dance by watching something done over and over again. I am a big fan of DVD's for that reason.

    I like to know details. For example, in trying to learn spins, telling me to tighten my stomach muscles gives useful information. Tell me to visualize or look for a particular feeling is useless to me.

    I realise that a different mindset may help, but the mindset I have used all these years has been so relentlessly successful that it is hard to give up the old ways...

    By the way, I have been an artist for many years. I figure draw. My wife is a professional model. I have taught adults to draw. So I don't think that I could be categorized as a left brain guy.

  11. africana

    africana New Member

    who says one can't be logical AND analytical AND creative AND artistic

    can't tell you how many different types of dance directors (and not just salsa) have tried to recruit me...but in the end I have a job that i like right now ;) (now if i would do my job :p )
  12. kansas49er

    kansas49er New Member

    So much of that is dead on. Funny story, at least to me.... :oops: Our dance team has as one of it's foundations a "square" that collapses inward to something else. A "star". Anyway, this square is really a rectangle, the center of which moves somewhat due to error. I was having trouble moving my partner towards the center of this, because our Instructor/choreographer kept stating something about moving 45 degrees. We had a discussion about squares and rectangles that are still laughed about today!

    And it is a good balance, and helps both physically and in the spontanaiety (sp) area.
  13. kansas49er

    kansas49er New Member

    Re: Engineer

    I can sooooo relate. Please, when I am learning, Break It Down!
  14. lynn

    lynn New Member

    maybe you should get a job as a professional dancer or a dance instructor?? then you can enjoy and do your job @ the same time :lol: !
  15. pygmalion

    pygmalion Well-Known Member

    Your spelling has been perfect so far. Why do you need spell check? :?
  16. kansas49er

    kansas49er New Member

    I am jealous. I CAN be creative, but I lean towards the slow creative type thing. Emphasis onthe SLOW.
  17. saludas

    saludas New Member

    a joke:

    An engineer, a mathmatician and an arts graduate were given the task of finding the height of a church steeple (the first to get the correct solution wins a $1000).

    The engineer tried to remember things about differential pressures, but resorted to climbing the steeple and lowering a string on a plumb bob until it touched the ground and then climbed down and measured the length of the string.

    The Mathematician layed out a reference line, measured the angle to the top of the steeple from both ends and worked out the height by trigonometry.

    However, the arts graduate won the prize. He bought the vicar a beer in the local pub and he told him how high the church steeple was.
  18. africana

    africana New Member

    oh I enjoy my job! i think pro dancers are insane

    and while we're talking about engineer stereotypes...does anyone else have "issues" relating to 'normal' people, especially fellow dancers?

    I think I fall into the non-social stereotype sometimes, I mean I can entertain people with jokes from time to time, but just can't stand inane of the reasons I dislike talking at dances (to non-'engineerly' people)
  19. lynn

    lynn New Member

    I'm logical and analytical first then i apply the creativity/artistic side. As someone who plays piano for ages, i need to master the techniques first, the expression comes naturally afterwards.
  20. pygmalion

    pygmalion Well-Known Member

    Uhh... just for the record. I suspect you're just one of many DFers who're less-than-efficient on the job, due to dance or DF... uh ... participation.

    That said, I often wonder about this engineer/dancer dichotomy as well. That is, is there really an "engineer" way of seeing the world? I, too, feel like I fit into both worlds fairly well. But I know quite a few engineers who dance for fun, and who seem to approach dance as a sort of project management gig. So what gives, here? Hmm. :?

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