We are going through each of the eight dances I’m doing at the Winter White on Saturday. Just to make sure we’ve ironed out the major wrinkles and to get more comfortable with them. And now this event makes a little more sense to me. We’ve made changes to the Swing, Viennese Waltz, Rumba and Fox Trot and this will give one opportunity to “battle test” them before Showcase.
I don’t know where the phrase “battle test” came from but OwnerGuy uses it and it seems to have become part of the studio lexicon. I know we practice these routines on lessons but it is a bit different to do them at a Showcase or a bigger event so having an opportunity to get out on the floor with other couples and run them is a good thing. It might reveal unexpected problems with alignment or other things that need fixing.
Of all the dances we did, I’ll just focus on the ones I thought went the best which were the Bolero and the Cha-Cha. Funny thing happened with the Bolero. We were doing it near one of the other instructors who competes with PJ so I notice out of the corner of my eye that he’s watching us. We finish and he says it was good but that we need to move more. This seems to be a common theme for me.
But he tossed the gauntlet and we decided to accept the challenge. We did it a second time but he wasn’t watching so PJ starts to give him some grief and he agrees to watch us do it a third time. As luck would have it, at the same time, OwnerGuy asks him to come out on his lesson to demonstrate something but he says he promised to watch us. So, of course, OwnerGuy decided to stop what he is doing to watch as well.
Oh but it gets better. There were two other couples on the floor and a pair of instructors dancing and suddenly they’ve all stopped to watch. Talk about “battle testing”. So we ended up doing an impromptu Bolero demonstration for the rest of the studio.
I did get some feedback on the part where he wanted more movement so I’ll try to incorporate that. We had the “bad knee” discussion again because I know that in an ideal world Bolero requires much more lowering. The arthritis just limits what I can do. Not an excuse, just a fact of life. You dance with the equipment you’ve got and make the best of it.
The Cha-Cha was done without an audience which was fine with me. We have yet to incorporate any of the Silver IV stuff into it so it is more familiar than some of the other dances. But we had a very strong run and looped it just for fun. Sometimes, you can make the transitions so smooth that the dance just flows seamlessly from step to step. That’s kind of what I shoot for because if you don’t break the flow, it is easy to just get totally into the dance and music.
So I’m getting some subtle pressure/encouragement about competing again from some of the other instructors. OwnerGuy has certainly brought it up a few times as well. I’m still on the fence because there’s a lot of factors that need to be considered.
If I’m going to be honest, I sometimes wonder whether this is more about my skill level or about having a larger entourage at the bigger events. Yes, the doubt is still strong with this one.
I mean I know I’ve been taking lessons for years but I also believe that dancing is a combination of learned skills and natural abilities. But I have no dance or music background. It shouldn’t matter but I get caught up in wondering where in the heck this talent came from and that leads to the whole I’m not really that good thing. Guess it would be better to believe in your gifts rather than questioning them but that is just something to keep working towards.