Sunday, April 19, 2009

Lesson with Largo- Rumba, Rumba, Cha, Rumba, Salsa

My last couple of lessons with Largo have been a ton of fun. As you can imagine with my new status of unemployment I've been living every day for searching for a job and heading into that dance studio. Largo has been very supportive and has even tried to come up with ideas for me to look for work. However, he has also remained the ever determined dance instructor determined to make sure I know my stuff.

We opened with Hustle, pretty much a start to every lesson with him as a warm up. Basically we stop as soon as I start smiling. Then we moved to Rumba because that was the music playing. We ran through every step I know and Largo even added a fun spin to the "12 step Cuban turn" I have yet to get the timing on this spin, but it's a lot of fun. I told him as much "Oh nice idea! I like the way that could look once I get it."

"Don't worry," he replies "you'll only do this step with me."

"No! I have to tell RT about it so I can practice it with both of you!" I retort.. I really like the idea of spinning once before I have to step back into frame.

Largo gets serious for a second... "No you can't tell RT!"

I was shocked... and as chance would have it I haven't told RT yet... but I will because that added bit is definitely cool... I want to see if RT can lead it too. Largo may be my teacher of almost a year, but I can still follow RT better than anyone else, so I have to know if I we can work that spin out.

"Ok.. I won't tell RT yet...but I will tell him at some point." I smile and we continue dancing.

We just kept working Rumba because that was the style of music playing... over and over always a Rumba. It was a while before we noticed it was actually the SAME song over and over... we had gotten busy working on my last to steps for the part of the syllabus I'm on... haven't really perfected those yet either... but the bonus is that at least I'm remembering them.

Largo then looks at me mid Rumba box and asks "What do you want to work on now?"

"I don't know...what do you have?" I usually like to have my instructors pick what I work on, I only request that we try and get at least a little Salsa into every lesson, even if it's just two or three minutes.

"Ummm... Cha Cha?" He says with a raised eyebrow and a grin...knowing I really can't turn that down either.

"Ok!" I smile back and we run over to the music machine to try and pick a cha cha song... enough with the Rumba already!

We are met by one of the other instructors who is about to re-start the same Rumba that we've been dancing to for at least half the lesson. Largo asks for a Cha Cha, and we are told that this instructor's student is working on a dance for a party, so they are going to play the song one more time. Largo and I both roll our eyes and Largo proceeds to lead me in Rumba directly in front of the music machine so no one can sneak in and take our chance at putting on a Cha Cha. I was giggling the entire time because I've never had to stake out the music machine before, it was endlessly amusing.

Once the Rumba was over we put on our Cha... and had at it... there are some steps in that Cha Cha syllabus that only Largo leads me through, and in my experience with him he's the only lead I don't spin quite fast enough for. It seems we're on a never ending quest to get certain spins within certain steps FASTER so that the step finishes better. I think I've only really gotten back to finish on time about 5 times in all the millions of times we've drilled these steps. Which really aggravates me because spinning in general is one of my strengths. I'll get it...probably in my next lesson.

We got the ONE Cha Cha song in and it was back to that Rumba song again. Largo and I couldn't believe it! I started laughing and Largo rolled his eyes... said something about Rumba again, and I thought because we had been dancing to the music all lesson we were going to go back to Rumba... so we're in frame... I start to Rumba, he starts to Cha... that didn't work out so well.

"Nooooo! You want to Rumba again???" He exclaims!

"Well, no Cha Cha is better, but I thought we were going to the music."

"No, Cha Cha." He states and we go again to the Cha Cha beat in his head.

"Help me out here man, I can't hear the beat that's going in your head!" I state while I'm having trouble picking up on his rhythm. He then started whispering "Cha cha" at the appropriate spots until I got it. Once I got one of my troubled spins once we moved on to... the dance I could do forever... Salsa!

So we danced Salsa a bit and then Largo started doing arm looping and at one point my head backed right into one of his arms.... well...that's not the way that's supposed to go!

"What are you trying to lead there? I'm not familiar with it." I tell him

"Oh, sorry... that's just my stuff." Largo says and tries to get back on syllabus.

"No, that's ok... what was that... I can learn it!" I tell him excitedly!

We then commenced in something Largo was actually trying to work out himself... it was a back to back...almost 5th positions...sort of... then double turn under his arm, so my head has to be spotting...back to frame. Well I've never actually turned full speed with my head tucked chin to chest before.. I'd seen I knew it could be done... but apparently I'm not nearly as good at spinning if I can't at least keep my head up. I got super dizzy!

"Oh... " Largo laughs "...sorry you're dizzy we'll stop."

"No.. I don't mind being dizzy...don't worry." All the while there are three Largo's in front of me, "Let's try it again."

So we did... and there is just something about that step he's working out that isn't working.... and I didn't exactly get the turns again either. So we walked through it one more time... and then it was time for the lesson to be over. I hugged him as I usually do and we commenced in a two minute argument about how he thinks that getting two inches cut off my very long very heavy hair is too much. I just told him to be thankful that I am not going to get the same haircut as him.

One thing about Largo... no one is ever uncertain of what he thinks about anything!

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