Talent? Or hard work?

pygmalion

Well-Known Member
#1
Here's another one that's come up tangentially a few times.

Let's imagine that the ballroom dance fairy godmother were to come to you in the middle of the night. Knowing that you are a competitive ballroom dancer, she presents you with just one wish. One. You have to choose between (1) having huge natural dance ability with an average work ethic and (2) having just average ability, with the capacity and willingness to work very, very hard to perfect your craft.

Which would you choose, if your ultimate goal was to become a world class competitive ballroom dancer? Unlimited talent, or hard work?



Thanks again, Chris. 8)
 

mamboqueen

Well-Known Member
#2
Can I ask for lots of money for lessons instead? A closet full of pretty dresses? *LOL* I kind of feel like I already have #2....
 

Laura

New Member
#4
Hummm, interesting question. Difficult to answer, but I'm going to go with #2 simply because I've seen a number of immensely talented dancers without good work ethics come and go. I knew this one guy who was beautiful, very nice dancer, his mom wanted to send him to Italy for a summer to train and he said no! Man, if someone offered me a summer in Italy to work my feet off on my dancing, I'd go buy the "Teach Yourself Italian" tapes today.
 
#5
pygmalion said:
Which would you choose, if your ultimate goal was to become a world class competitive ballroom dancer? Unlimited talent, or hard work?
That's a Catch-22. My answer: "Thanks but no thanks."

It's like choosing between having sex only one time with the most gorgeous woman I can imagine or an infinite amount of times with the ugliest.
 

Twilight_Elena

Well-Known Member
#6
I'd ask for #1.
:shock: :shock: :shock:
Yes, yes. Because I believe that work ethics don't work with dancing. I'm not a hard worker by nature, but I'd practice my dancing for hours, days, months. Years, gosh darnit!!

Twilight Elena
 

pygmalion

Well-Known Member
#7
Egoist said:
pygmalion said:
Which would you choose, if your ultimate goal was to become a world class competitive ballroom dancer? Unlimited talent, or hard work?
That's a Catch-22. My answer: "Thanks but no thanks."

It's like choosing between having sex only one time with the most gorgeous woman I can imagine or an infinite amount of times with the ugliest.
How could you turn down the fairy godmother? :shock: :lol:

I sometimes think that exceptional talent can become an Achilles heel. I'm not talking dance, now, so feel free to shoot me down. But, when concepts come easily to you, it's hard not to become complacent. And, while you're enjoying your early successes and perhaps resting on your laurels a bit too much, some hard worker comes from behind and eats your lunch. The tortoise and the hare, all over again. :?
 

Tasek

New Member
#8
"Genius is one per cent inspiration and ninety-nine per cent perspiration."
-- Thomas A. Edison

I think the hard work would offer the best results (and most the likely the most reliable results).
 
#9
I also think hard work is the answer. You may not end up quite as outstanding of a dancer if you don't have any natural talent; but I'm a firm believer that a lot of this art can be learned.

It is funny how something that you work on for quite a while becomes part of your muscle memory and it eventually becomes effortless. It will take a while, but I think it almost always happens.

As for natural talent, I have to agree with the comments above - if you are very talented, you can do fairly well for a while, but will not put you on top.

By the way, can we ask the fairy godmother for 'half - and - half'???? :)
 

chachachacat

Well-Known Member
#10
IF you want to compete, I'd say #2, because it takes total dedication to winning to win World titles, if that is your goal. I was going to say, dedication to dancing, but it is beyond that. Donny Burns has said, over and over, "Winning is everything."
Dance-sport at world-class levels is very physically demanding, and
takes a tremendous amount of effort, time, money, and the great expense of having nothing else in your life.
Including a relationship, unless it's with your partner. And can you imagine living in peace and harmony 24/7 with the same person? :roll:

:D Edit :But, this is not my personal choice. I couldn't give up EVERYTHING in life for one thing.
I am happy with my talent, and I wouldn't trade it. I'd have to go back in time, anyway... is that allowed? :D
 
#11
Partner dancing comes pretty naturally to me since I've been doing other types of dancing for 9 years. I pick up new things in ballroom dancing pretty quickly and I am OK at them, but not great because I hardly ever practice on my own time like when I'm at home. Each week, I just go to 1 private lesson and 4 group classes with no practicing in between. :oops:

So since I already have #1 (well... I have a moderate amount of talent... :roll: ), can I ask for the 2nd part of #2 (the part about having a strong work ethic) so that I don't have to give up my natural talent? :) 8)
 
#12
Laura said:
Hummm, interesting question. Difficult to answer, but I'm going to go with #2 simply because I've seen a number of immensely talented dancers without good work ethics come and go. I knew this one guy who was beautiful, very nice dancer, his mom wanted to send him to Italy for a summer to train and he said no! Man, if someone offered me a summer in Italy to work my feet off on my dancing, I'd go buy the "Teach Yourself Italian" tapes today.
Why Italy? And where in particularly :?:
 

Laura

New Member
#13
I believe it was to train at Augusto Schiavo's studio. I don't know what city it is in. But the young man didn't want to go. Oh well, we all make our own choices in life....
 

pygmalion

Well-Known Member
#14
You're kidding!?! He turned down an opportunity very few ballroom people (with half a brain in their heads) would. I guess he had the right to make his own choices ... :?
 

Laura

New Member
#15
It might have been at Massimo Giorgianni's studio. I used to confused those two all the time. But still, it was DEFINITELY a big name in Standard from Italy.

The guy in question doesn't even compete in ballroom anymore. So there's a case where talent and natural ability went for nothing because he just didn't want to do it.
 

pygmalion

Well-Known Member
#16
To be honest (and to violate my own rules LOL) I think that, if you're going to make it to world class, you have to have both. Talent and a heck of a lot of hard work.

At lower tiers (like mid-level local dance coach, for example) one or the other may suffice.

But I really do believe that having exceptional talent at the start makes it more difficult to get to the finish line. Meaning, at the beginning levels, quite naturally, you excel because of God-given talent, if you're very talented. But a whole lot of average people are willing to go above and beyond the call of duty to succeed. So if you, the top 10%, talent-wise, sit on your butt, you're going to lose, eventually. Just my two cents. *shrug*
 
#17
Id have to choose #2.


Wheres the satisfaction in winning if you arent really working for it? Id rather know I have given it my everything, dedication, sweat , tears.. than win with minimal effort and lack of dedication to the sport because I happen to have natural ability..
 

chachachacat

Well-Known Member
#18
labelledanseuse said:
Partner dancing comes pretty naturally to me since I've been doing other types of dancing for 9 years. I pick up new things in ballroom dancing pretty quickly and I am OK at them, but not great because I hardly ever practice on my own time like when I'm at home. Each week, I just go to 1 private lesson and 4 group classes with no practicing in between. :oops:

So since I already have #1 (well... I have a moderate amount of talent... :roll: ), can I ask for the 2nd part of #2 (the part about having a strong work ethic) so that I don't have to give up my natural talent? :) 8)
A haHAH! NO, HECK NO! We'd all like to say that! Give me Both!
:nope:
I wrote about the choice as presented, within those infuriating parameters. I wouln't want to wake up one day with average talent! No way. This wasn't my personal choice - I'd take the talent and run and have fun! :D
 

chachachacat

Well-Known Member
#19
Laura said:
I believe it was to train at Augusto Schiavo's studio. I don't know what city it is in. But the young man didn't want to go. Oh well, we all make our own choices in life....
I'd be there in one hot Italian second!!!!!!!!! :!: :p :D :D Augusto? :shock: :shock: :D :D
 

Warren J. Dew

Well-Known Member
#20
pygmalion said:
Which would you choose, if your ultimate goal was to become a world class competitive ballroom dancer? Unlimited talent, or hard work?
Hey, this is a trick question. If I get talent from the fairy godmother, I get it for free, but if I get hard work from her, I still have to spend my own hard earned time on it?

If I got the hard work for free, too - say, I could snap my fingers and say, "I work the equivalent of six months on this", and I get the result - hard work, definitely.

Talent is just another word for what the coach doesn't know how to teach. If you know what to work on, you can get the talent by working on it.
 

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