In working with an almost entirely-university age group, I've found
that sometimes my undergraduate friends want music faster, and other
times slower. As far as attracting younger dancers are concerned,
speed of music doesn't seem to be the issue for us. If anything, it
is in the *perception* of there being a big difference between "us"
and "them" (whoever you put into those categories).
What we've found is that once you get university age dancers to a
ball, they very frequently turn into SCD regulars *IF* they are
welcomed, encouraged, and made to feel like "one of us." Conversely,
excessive correction seems to be the deathknell of interest among
beginning dancers (of any age, I suspect). Once they understand the
basics, then they often want good, critical teaching and
instruction. But they don't get there automatically.
At 01:06 PM 5/10/2006, you wrote: >Andrew C Aitchison wrote: >>On Wed, 10 May 2006, Martin Sheffield wrote: >> > ... a recording dating from the 40s & 50s, when dancers > >> apparently had more energy than they do today. >> >> >>I'm not familiar with recordings from that time, but I'm convinced >>that this plays a part in why SCD has (some) problems attracting the young. >> >Even if we manage to attract the young, I am quite certain we won't >keep them with 8x32-bar speys that last 8m, 30 secs, even 9 m. >>... I've heard that it was common to speed them up to fit onto a 78. >> >I danced with J Shand live once or twice and remember it being an >exhausting affair -- and I was still a teenager! >>Even when LPs came out, I remember that the usual length for 8x32 R >>was 4 m 20 secs. >Today, these dances are being recorded at nearer 4m 50. >Exceptions are R Whitehead, who clearly intends us to put energy >into our dancing, and I MacPhail who is capable of anything. > >I wonder if the American bands are playing slower than the Brits -- >and influencing certain musicians that have spent too much time in >the States ... > >Martin, >who often speeds up his CDs when making copies (for his own private >use of course) >in almost bandless France.