At the Beginning

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Not related to the post but just some quotes stirred up by something I listened to.

The first formation practice went about as expected. A couple of people who signed up didn’t show but they dragged another male student in to help even up the numbers. We learned the beginning steps and there is nothing too complicated but it will be interesting to see where it goes. Plus, we didn’t dance it up to speed and they’ve picked a relatively quick song.

They tried to pick a song that would fit with the theme of the upcoming Showcase. Every Showcase has a theme but it is often hard to really understand why. I guess it gives some flexibility to wear a different type of outfit for the dinner. Mostly, it just determines how they decorate the ballroom and the tables. Honestly, they don’t really do enough to play up the theme which is why it seems like a lot of people just sort of ignore it.

I do have a theme for my quotes.

And the song sort of tells a story so they’ve tried to design the choreography to help tell it with certain movements synced to certain parts of the song (lyrics and such). That would make it that much more important that we are all in sync and doing the movement when it is supposed to happen. And that tends to be one of the big challenges in these formations. Either people just forget certain things or they get behind and skip something to catch up.

I think the other challenge is getting people to let go a little bit. Part of the problem there is that since we don’t have all couples, students are dancing with other students and everyone’s comfort level is going to be a little bit different. Not just with dancing with someone else but the movements in between. To really make it a performance, you have to sell it and that sometimes requires not worrying about how you look.

In the end, I suspect that all student formations tend to fall a little short of the vision that the instructors had. But as long as everyone tries and has fun, it will come out just fine.

Tonight, I think we are going to continue work on the new routine we are planning for the two fall Showcases I’m doing. I do like the process of learning choreography even though it can be frustrating at times. I do sometimes have struggles with translating what someone else is doing to what actions I need to take. Plus, I tend to want it to all come together quickly (inner perfectionist speaks).

But if you can learn to live with the process, it can be fun. It is vaguely like putting a puzzle together. At the start, you’ve got all these individual pieces and you have to start putting them together to make the whole. Sometimes, there are pieces you can look at a hundred times and then, suddenly, they fit on the 101st try. At the end, you can look at the whole and you’ve put something beautiful together.

Now, the analogy falls apart a bit because with a puzzle, you have an idea of what the finished product should look like. A lot of times with choreography, they only create part and then add the rest later so you often won’t see the entire picture at the beginning. Makes it hard to see how it all fits but it eventually does.

The only downside right now is that we’ve got another hot and humid day. When they say it isn’t the heat, its the humidity, it is mostly true even if it is annoying to hear. Even with AC, the air just gets stagnant and there is nothing worse than doing physical activity in dead air. Not really looking forward to that.

So the podcast I was listening to was a jumble of things. Happens a lot with this particular podcast. They have a supposed topic and then they start rambling through other thoughts. Anyway, part of it centered on what kind of life you want to lead – heavy stuff.

My problem with some of it was the theme about life needing big goals and dreams. True for some but I don’t think for everyone. We can’t really save the world but we can often make it a better place just by taking small actions. Maybe you do something that brings a little light into someone else’s life. Do that enough times and those little things add up to lot. Well that’s why I found a bunch of quotes on small things.

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