Sunday, August 17, 2008

Lesson Cha Cha, Rumba, East Coast Swing

This week's lesson started absolutely opposite of last week's. We warmed up with Hustle, but my brain wasn't there... I was trying to take control and back lead some of the worst stuff imaginable. I think it was that I was trying to take advantage of my movements but also had an image in my head of what the dance was going to look like.... so I pushed myself into a free spin that was a disaster, then a regular spin that RT wasn't intending! I was surprising myself with my disastrous following. Normally we call that anticipating the next step, which as a follow I'm not supposed to do. I wouldn't even call it that, because I wasn't attempting to anticipate where RT wanted to send me next, no... I was back-leading in the worst way possible. We quickly put an end to that Hustle, I know I was hoping the next dance would go better, I'm pretty sure RT was too.

PhotobucketI did everything short of demanding that we work on Cha Cha. Thankfully RT didn't seem to have my lesson already planned in his head and allowed for it. I love to work on this dance! Cha Cha is fun, flirty, and to get it right takes a level of difficulty I'm not sure I'll ever master. You'll also notice that I seem to get asked to dance Cha Cha a lot... (MSU, and several other instructors I don't dance with regularly always seem to pick me for Cha Cha) so I like to work on it as much as possible. My intent in asking for Cha Cha was to get to DANCE Cha Cha with RT and then go into whatever he wanted to teach me. Again, I didn't actually say I wanted to dance, I just said I wanted Cha Cha... so RT brought me front and center to work on a new pattern. Actually, I remembered that MSU has tried to get me through this step a couple of times, and I told RT as much. He just laughed that I like dancing with MSU a LOT (It's very rare that a student visits other studios within the FADS family, so it's funny that I know most of the instructors dance styles and reference them in my lesson) Then focused on the step more (Which I don't know the name of, but we call "The one [MSU] does"). Wow to actually try and know the pattern is a lot harder than just being pushed through it! I don't know what it is... but it reminds me of a cross between the grapevine for Fox Trot, and the Salsa Box...but it's for Cha Cha so it's just different enough to cause me problems :). We worked on that, I seemed to pick up on it pretty quick, so we moved on.

Next Cha Cha step up was the double open break into a pivot turn... that step ends odd for me... I have trouble getting it right. I got the hips into the double open break, and I'm pretty sure I can pull off a passable pivot turn in my sleep, but I can't seem to get the footing right to finish with the Cha Cha at the end. Which I guess is my new practice quest. Once I felt my frustration rising I started joking with RT. "You know this doesn't count as an actual Cha Cha, I want to dance a Cha Cha before we're through. I mean, the teaching bit is nice...that is what I'm here for... but I want to dance a Cha Cha!" So we danced a Cha Cha, but only for the purpose of practicing the new patterns. I told him that didn't count either.

So RT put on a Cha Cha, and we danced... all the steps I the new ones I'm fighting with. Remember how I said I wanted to control my spins? That was completely forgotten for this dance, and possibly the entire lesson. I just wanted to do what I always do, wind up and let it rip. Most of the time I can control the ending so that it doesn't look so bad. RT said "Slow down your spins." when I finished the Manhattan Roll out too soon. Photobucket

"I don't want to, I usually just like to let my spins rip and see where I end up."
RT found that amusing, I don't think I told him that before. "Don't... you have to control them they are too fast."
(This is all while we're dancing, of course, we don't get to have converations any other time, we must be a sight on the dance floor when we do this)

So RT then leads me into the chase step..where I chase him for Cha cha, pivot, he cases me, usually happens about 3 times... it ends when I turn and I'm facing him instead of his back...
Mid Chase we're talking about my spins I hear behind me "Slow your turns down, they're too fast."
I pivot, and say to his back "No, they're not, you're just going to have to find a faster song!"
He ends the chase turns with that classic look that tells me that I know I said something completely un-helpful, but mildly amusing.

Then to prove his point... I hate that he's always right... we pick up a quick Salsa, where true to form of the lesson I was completely out of control on the Coca-cola turn, which is one I know I get if I decide to control it. Someday I'll be right... just you wait... I'll get the speed AND the control that I want.

Next dance up... Rumba, we really only worked on it for a minute...because it's tradition. I'm pleased to say that I remembered the bit I got coached on from the last lesson, but completely forgot to snap my movements and make it look better. Not a bad little test to see where I was at. I do still have to work on those spirals though.

Last dance of the evening was East Coast Swing. Where I learned a style of turning I'm pretty sure I'll never remember. Instead of the spin happening for the length of the triple step and ending with a rock step, this one actually takes place during the rock step counts and ends with a triple step. It's very odd to me. I seemed to follow the lead into it alright, but the direction of my triple step on the way out is all off... we'll add that to the list of what I need to practice.

Good Lesson, but I need to remember to control my speed... the funny part is in my LIFE I've never been told I'm fast at anything... until now, and I have to learn to control it! HA!

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