Discussion in 'General Dance Discussion' started by Phil Owl, Mar 29, 2003.
What is it with people lately? Ugh.
If only there were more leaders that fret about pleasing their follows...
I have to agree here ... If a lady is a beginner, announced or unannounced, and I have asked her to dance - I dance. I may not float around, and I may have to think about my steps, but if she graced me with a dance, I am surely making every attempt to make it a pleasurable experience. I hope I never forget - I was a beginner once too....
This is one of mine as well, and I got it when I went to my studio social for a brief bit last night. I appreciate the input, but during a social... I just want to cut loose. I know he wants me to do well in my upcoming competition, though.
A major pet peeve of mine though happens to be when married couples come to studio socials... and don't intermingle. They always just stay glued to one another. A friend of mine and I were talking about this and we have this "gang up scheme" where we're both going to approach them at the same time and ask them to dance... studio rules say you can't say no.
Dancing is dancing, period. There's always something to work on, even if it is just with a beginner. Dance snobs in any studio are never any fun to be around.
There's a guy at my studio that knows more "club moves" in salsa and bachata which I don't know, and I always ask him to just try to lead me through them. Most of the times it seems to work out very well.
I'm in a constant state of "glued to my SO" ... I'm perfectly happy to dance with other people, but I'm also perfectly happy to remain "glued to my SO" and I don't care if other people care . I don't social dance often, so it usually takes a while for leaders to notice I'll dance with other people. (Usually when one of the regulars I've known for a decade comes by to ask ).
I would be weirded out by a social that doesn't allow you to say "no," though. Seems like consent and comfort are more important... what's wrong with promoting open communication and "say yes whenever you can!" instead of "you're not allowed to say no." I think I've only said no twice in a decade: once from exhaustion and once because of extreme personal conflict. I feel like the former would be a health risk if I couldn't say no, and the latter would make me uncomfortable to go to the social. (Ok, I'm sure I've said "sorry, I don't know West Coast" a couple of times too.)
Well, our studio I believe words it that way... but most people interpret it as, "Don't say no without a good reason." Like your legs are broken kind of reason.
You never know what you may learn by dancing with other people. We're there to learn too!
I'm at the studio dances as a single woman, so I prefer it when couples split up part of the time, but when they don't, there are a variety of reasons. I have seen two instructors ask both members of a couple at the same time and I frequently ask the husband if the wife of a couple is dancing with somebody else. If a couple is sitting out a dance, I try to gauge the situation. If I think it's because they are new and are uncomfortable with the dance, I sometimes ask the husband and frequently the wife is enthusiastic about "her" leader getting some more practice. The point is, I always try to assess what a couple's intention is before I ask the leader. Are they going to dance together, do they look as if they are ready for a sit down break and don't actually want to dance, etc.
A related anecdote: I was at a non-studio dance and there was a young (by my standards) European couple who I only saw dancing together, but one dance they were standing on the side. I had chatted with them a bit on the way in and was bold enough to ask the guy to dance--since it was an uncertain situation (I didn't see anybody else asking either of them and I didn't know why), I used the "would you like to finish this dance with me" method part way through. Turns out they were here for his work for a year or two and he only danced International style. He had competed in Europe and was very good. I showed him the basic step of the American style and from there it was lead and follow. He was extremely gracious about the whole thing and extended the "would you like to finish this dance" into the next one. Meanwhile, the second I had asked the husband to dance, somebody quickly asked the wife as well. The wife was also a very good dancer, very good follow, apparently felt great to dance with, and was drop-dead gorgeous. After we finished our dances together, the husband watched his wife for one more dance with a "isn't she wonderful" look on his face before stepping back in. After that, we always danced a couple of dances together when we were both there… much to the happiness of the other guys.
Two pet peeves.
1-We have an elderly gentleman at our studios. The ladies, including DW, spent much time coddling him as a beginner and much longer than average. He got franchise level attention at an independent studio from the customers. Now we have to constantly push him to dance with the single newbies, unless they are 40 years younger than him. He did not pay it forward easily.
2-Followers that have been dancing for years taking little or no lessons still expect you to still coddle them like they are beginners.
1) totally bad form
2) well...under those circumstance, she still is a beginner
I have to say that I really only have one pet peeve at socials and that is when a man asks me to dance and then proceeds to try to teach/blame me for whatever isn't going the way he percieves that it should....particularly when I have spent (conservatively, because I don't think I want to really tabulate it) about half a million dollars over the past decade learning to dance and think that I have managed to gather some skill...
yup, that earns an instant trip to my Will Not Dance With Again list.
Yep, they want you to kiss their *ss like beginners, but overlook the fact that they're not as far up on the dance ladder with their skills as they think they are.
Personally tired of mooches who managed to sucker a partner into paying for everything for them, hanging onto them for years, and then assuming that just because someone has paid their way, that they deserve to be treated like studio "staff"- and actually try to start dictating to teachers and other students what to do. Then, their favorite self-quote is "I won't 'tollerate' anyone in my life who can't bless me."
Someone needs a glass of taco punch.
Several married couples that I know go to socials as a date. I have no problem with that. They're under no obligation to entertain singles and they have taken vows to put each other above all others after all. ;-)
They will dance with others though if asked or if there's a mixer.
Well, this sounds perfectly reasonable until one takes a view from the business
or community view. If the dance has plenty of people, or is traditionally a
"couples" dance, then the behavior is fine. However, if the dance is "sustained"
or is sustainable only if couples mix in with singles, then some behavior like
being exclusive the first hour and mixing for the second would be smarter. It's
not a matter of entertaining singles, but a matter of "giving" to the venue/
community, because participants are "obliged" to support the businesses
they frequent. Similar to the "obligation" for advanced dancers to dance
I always encourage my husband to ask other ladies to dance at the social. He tends not to want to dance with someone he hasn't danced with in a class before, though, since he's also a beginner (though now one of the best beginners! good work!). Fortunately, we have now danced with many more people at the studio, so we're not sticking together the whole time.
How on earth would they sucker a partner into paying like that?
What's with all the words in quotation marks? Are they your opinions? Or are you setting them apart as being from the business or community view?
From another business or community view, the business/community would probably worse off if couples decided not to go to a social at all (or to reduce their presence at socials) because of pressure to dance with others.
All I know is standard, though, and most people dance other styles at socials, so I have to say "No" a lot. If one said that I have an obligation to the community to learn smooth/Latin/rhythm so I can dance those styles at socials, one can go to the Hot Place.
My college team puts on several social dances during the year where most people who attend have never danced before, and we teach one or two quick, basic lessons and have open dance time for those styles. Often I'll end up with a leader who has JUST learned a step, has no idea how to lead it, and gets annoyed with me when I don't read his mind to know that he wants to begin the step.
and I'm sure this one has been said before - wandering hands! I understand that lots of non-dancers think the leader's hand goes on the follower's waist, but there's no reason for hands to be moving around to the front!
This really irks me out... and I've had this happen at a studio before. Usually when the hand starts leading around, at least going out in a Latin club, I'll back lead a pretzel, hammerlock, etc...
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