Sunday, October 9, 2011

Dancing at Week's End, and a Sneak Peak

Part: Follow
Dances: Night club 2-step, Viennese Waltz, Waltz, Foxtrot, Salsa
Hovers: 3

Our Friday night has begun to follow a bit of a routine; a short practice followed by social dancing. This Friday we worked a bit on Viennese Waltz. Viennese is a good dance for this because we can work on something very specific that we don't dance all the time, and that way we can make a little progress without feeling like we're going over the same old stuff we've been doing all week. That way we also have something to take out on that social floor when the Viennese comes on and the floor clears.

It was more work on the fleckerls this time, and I think Jeff has nailed what it takes to lead in and out of it. Sometimes the lead into them is still a bit fuzzy to me, as in, it feels too much like a regular half reverse turn for me to get the memo until it's too late, but I've figured out how to cheat until the contra-check where I can get back on. The exits are much better now though. I need to work more on staying in my space without dropping my side and making my steps as tiny and rotary as possible, and I think I could be getting more torque out of my step that crosses behind. Jeff was mentioning that at some points in each turn he feels like I'm giving him extra rotation, but I think that's the idea. Depending on where we are in the rotation one or the other is giving the power and momentum. Once we get better at these I'm going to have to experiment with using the wrong side position. I keep finding myself slipping over that way, so it might end up working better for me.

After that it was off to social dancing. Several of our friends and fellow students of our coaches were there this time, so we had fun visiting and dancing with them. A couple of them were showing us this crazy part of their silver waltz routine where they have to do a reverse turn coming out of an outside spin! Talk about awkward! Jeff and I have an outside spin into natural, which is pretty normal, but into a reverse is just weird. We experimented a bit with it and found that a very strong right shape makes it work, but still strange feeling.

Jeff and I danced a couple of good waltzes, foxtrot, Viennese waltz, night club, and salsa. Though foxtrot continues to be my favorite to dance, I have to say that I think waltz is currently our best dance. One of the waltzes they played was a great one to dance to, very slow, with a little variation in speed, I believe. I found the music relaxing and I think I followed a lot better than sometimes...we're both getting a better feel for floor pressure and really taking the necessary time to draw in the feet and slide along the floor. Our Viennese went pretty well too, except that Jeff got stuck in the fleckrels because I think he forgot which part he was on so we just kept going around and around and I was cheating like crazy because I got so confused, but we got out alive and well! Oddly enough, I also think our salsa is getting pretty passable...considering we're standard dancers and all, and think it's mainly due to our night club 2-step practice since that has helped us move decently together in that open social frame. Still, I'm no Latin dancer when it comes to spins. Jeff is a good lead though, and with more and more of our practice with them I'm getting a better feel for the dynamics of the social type dances. I kind of like that they leave more freedom of musical expression for the lady too, and I think I've become much less self-conscious about getting a little creative with it, styling, body movement, etc.

Overall I think we danced well; my knee is still not up to par, but I feel like I'm bouncing back from this injury much quicker than I have in the past, so I am very thankful for that.

This weekend, I'm working on a big dance related project; I'm sewing my own ballgown for competition. I've made one before (in the photo on my bio page), but it was more of a test run and not as carefully planned out as this one. Now that I know a whole bunch of mistakes not to make, my hope is that I will be successful with this one. Here is my progress to date. Envision this with the addition of about 40 gross of Swarovski crystals, navy blue satin binding on the top skirt ruffle, and heavily stoned blue lace motifs encircling part of the bodice and a shoulder strap, and floats.


  1. Dress looks great! Great job Sarah!

  2. Thanks, Linda! So far so good...though it always takes more time than I expect. I just spent all afternoon cutting out the underskirts. Now to sew them.