Balance Between Moves and Basic Steps

#1
I was recently having a discussion with a friend about how he thought he was just starting to do way to many moves instead of taking time to just slow down a bit and do the basic steps. Once he mentioned that, I also realized that now that I have been dancing a while and know a lot of moves, I do tend to just go from move to move more. When I was a beginner I took some time between moves to do a few basics. I am curious if there any opinions from follows out there? Do you prefer to take some time just to do a few basics or is a lot of moves okay? Whats the perfect balance?
 

snapdancer

Well-Known Member
#2
In general, a leader should be sensitive to how his follower is handling things. If things start getting shaky, go back to the basic. Quite often, that allows the partnership to get back in sync so you can try something else.
 

Siggav

Active Member
#3
I find that musicality, play and conversational dancing (as in the follow gets to have more of a say) happens more when you're not just chaining moves together. Having a couple of basics in between sometimes makes sense to let the dance breathe and provide openings for variations and stuff.

Also dances can be more fun when there's a bit of an arc in teems of the intensity and how complicated/flashy the moves are.

You can still do a lot of the breathing and changes in intensity while chaining moves together obviously but it's sonething to think ablut. Ali and Katja put it quite well saying: "less leading, more dancing!" As in if you're not constantly leading moves you have more time to dance yourself too and trust that your follow can dance themselves too
 

Angel HI

Well-Known Member
#4
Read my signature. "Dance is not Steps, it is the movement in between", and "The most beautiful part of the dance is the illusive movement in the stillness". All of this is to say that there is so much to be found in the dance other than stringing a lot of steps together. Consider, too, that what you might feel is a fun and fancy step, might not be shared by your partner. i have had many dancers to say that they prefer a nicely danced basic to a not-so-nicecly danced "upper-level" (?) display of some syllabus.
 
#5
I prefer to dance to the music rather than being lead through someone's repertoire of patterns. It's always obvious when dancers aren't hearing the music and are just going from "move to move."
 
#7
I find that musicality, play and conversational dancing (as in the follow gets to have more of a say) happens more when you're not just chaining moves together. Having a couple of basics in between sometimes makes sense to let the dance breathe and provide openings for variations and stuff.

Also dances can be more fun when there's a bit of an arc in teems of the intensity and how complicated/flashy the moves are.

You can still do a lot of the breathing and changes in intensity while chaining moves together obviously but it's sonething to think ablut. Ali and Katja put it quite well saying: "less leading, more dancing!" As in if you're not constantly leading moves you have more time to dance yourself too and trust that your follow can dance themselves too
Thank you. I think your response best got to the heart of what I was asking.
 
#8
From a couple of the responses I think I should clarify a little. Assume were in a non-existent world every move is done perfectly to the beat and all the moves are strung together perfectly with the beat. Also assume the follow is able to follow every move perfectly. In this situation is there a perfect balance between doing basics and moves?
 

snapdancer

Well-Known Member
#9
Given the scenario you just stated, do what MintyMe suggested. Use your partnership's skills to dance to the music. Meaning more than just on time to the music.
 

Siggav

Active Member
#10
With your scenario of the dancing going completely smoothly with awesome lead/follow skills, don't think of "basics" and "moves". Instead there's the music and the partnership dancing to the music and usually lots of play kicks in too. Music goes quiet, the dancing goes quiet, music swells the dancing gets more active. There's a hang or stretched out bits in the music and you can play with that changing the timings of things.

If you're really working on maintaining the momentum and flow of the dance and dancing to the music then the difference between a "basic" and a "move" and different moves kind of all melts away.

It's a lot more boring being led through chained move on a chained move kind of flat over a dance vs when you can tell that your lead isn't really thinking about moves, instead it's a and now we have a lot of rotational energy so it feels right to go like this, and now the music is about to hit a break so lets do a sharp stop with this, mess around a bit with some solo jazz steps, then whoops back into a swing out but no the music changed and is more squishy so lets do the squishy redirect half way through the swingout back into open and I can hear some cool rythms in there so Im going to vary the timings of my footwork and Im open to my follow messing around as well with some syncopations and cool they just threw down with neat variation, lets hang out in open a bit longer.. etc etc.
 
#11
With your scenario of the dancing going completely smoothly with awesome lead/follow skills, don't think of "basics" and "moves". Instead there's the music and the partnership dancing to the music and usually lots of play kicks in too. Music goes quiet, the dancing goes quiet, music swells the dancing gets more active. There's a hang or stretched out bits in the music and you can play with that changing the timings of things.

If you're really working on maintaining the momentum and flow of the dance and dancing to the music then the difference between a "basic" and a "move" and different moves kind of all melts away.

It's a lot more boring being led through chained move on a chained move kind of flat over a dance vs when you can tell that your lead isn't really thinking about moves, instead it's a and now we have a lot of rotational energy so it feels right to go like this, and now the music is about to hit a break so lets do a sharp stop with this, mess around a bit with some solo jazz steps, then whoops back into a swing out but no the music changed and is more squishy so lets do the squishy redirect half way through the swingout back into open and I can hear some cool rythms in there so Im going to vary the timings of my footwork and Im open to my follow messing around as well with some syncopations and cool they just threw down with neat variation, lets hang out in open a bit longer.. etc etc.

Thanks, I think this is very helpful. I think you helped me figure out the next step I need to take with my dancing. Stop thinking about moves and just listen to the music to tell me what to do.
 

Dance Ads