Swing Discussion Boards > To troupe or not to troupe?

Discussion in 'Swing Discussion Boards' started by RainyDay13, Apr 23, 2017.


Should I join the troupe?

  1. Yes, join!

    0 vote(s)
  2. No, stick to social dances

    0 vote(s)
  1. RainyDay13

    RainyDay13 New Member

    Hello everyone. I am new to swing dancing, I was introduced to it late December, and I've been religiously attending weekly classes and social dances since early January. I absolutely love swing. I have found a passion I never even knew I had, and I can't get enough. I even found a social dance to attend when I visited my best friend in another state and dragged her along with me. Now, to get to the point. Or at least start to.

    A couple of the instructors at the studio I typically dance at are forming a troupe, which if I join would mean more practice, workshops, new skills, and a lot more opportunities to learn and dance more. Which is great. But there's 2 problems.

    #1 - I have pretty severe depression, and swing dancing is the first thing I've found that helps me fight it. One of the worst things about depression is that it takes the things you love and makes you disinterested, or just not want to do them any more, even though you love them. I'm terrified that this will happen with swing, and I'm worried that if I join this troupe it will happen faster.

    #2 - I really don't like one of the girls who is joining the troupe, to the point where it affects my enthusiasm for the dance. She showed up halfway through one of the lindy lessons and paired with me as a lead. It was only my second ever lindy class and I was already nervous. She tripped me up, then laid into me about being a bad follow. The next week she kept cutting the instructors off and adding her own comments or directions. Now she is experienced, I'll give her that, but it struck me as extremely disrespectful not to mention disrupting. She's intimidating and just really off-putting.

    So now to actually get to my question (if you've stuck with this post this long, THANK YOU). Should I join this troupe, which means putting up with this girl and risking losing my passion for the dance, in favor of getting to dance more and practice more? Or should I stick with my once-a-week lesson/dance?

    Any advice or comments are welcome. Thank you.
  2. Steve Pastor

    Steve Pastor Moderator Staff Member

    When it comes right down to it, you are the only one who can decide what to do, or not.

    I have fond memories of being in a line dance group and performing at the county fair, the Hilton Hotel in Portland, and other places. I have photos and video, too, which I actually look at once in a great while.

    I think you know that physical activity is good for you. And there are real benefits to being in a group where people are supportive of each other.
    On the other hand, I can say that I HAVE done things like quit lessons because of a troublesome person. But then, the lessons were only marginally useful at that point.
    There are time when I have a not very good (ok - pretty rotten) weekend or weekends out dancing, getting to dance for various reasons, although I'm at the usual places, and I wonder if I need a new hobby. I wouldn't call it severely depressed, but I WOULD say I'm "bummed out." I keep going out, and then I'll have a great weekend of country western, swing, or Argentine Tango, and I'm SO glad I went out.

    Have you considered talking to the instructors about this person? You come across as the kind of person who would be able to present it in a diplomatic fashion, and maybe ask them if they could help you limit your exposure to her.

    Something else to consider is that often in life we have to accept a certain amount of risk to pursue goals we want to achieve.

    And, you can always come here to share things: good or bad.

    And, welcome to the Forum.
    RainyDay13 likes this.
  3. flying_backwards

    flying_backwards Active Member

    Hi RainyDay13,
    If I were in a troupe I would love to have someone like you be a part because you think things through carefully and recognize how much of a commitment you would be making. And you are willing to admit you have vulnerabilities. And you recognize a troupe is as much about the people in it as the dancing.

    About whether it is advisable with depression, my only advice is to ask a real professional, not an online forum, about that part. I would only be guessing. I hope their advice will be that it could help you to be around others enjoying their passion. Is our time dancing like a candle, burned brightly burns fast? Or does more dance feed the fire like solar fusion, making it last longer? For me the latter. When my dance hours diminish I fade.

    I'm sorry one of the dancers was rude. It just takes one bad apple. I know, we're supposed to not let it shake us up. But it can. I hope the troupe leader is able to recognize and moderate such interruptions.

    I hope it works out for you.
    RainyDay13 likes this.
  4. RainyDay13

    RainyDay13 New Member

    Thank you for your responses!

    I actually did finally make an appointment with a therapist. I was hoping I would be able to discuss this with her, but unfortunately she didn't have any openings until next Thursday, and the deadline to join the troupe is this Sunday. I do know that when I dance, I get very happy. It's the highlight of my week and I always look forward to it. But I'm really scared of that joy and passion disappearing.

    Mostly I do my best to avoid her whenever possible. However, her sister is one of the ones forming the troupe, so avoiding her will be difficult. I get along with her sister great, I love her as an instructor and a person. I wish I could say the same for this girl.

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