Thread

strathspey@strathspey.org:44570

Previous Message Next Message

  • Chris1Ronald

    Chris1Ronald March 8, 2006, 4:50 p.m. (Message 44570)

    Re: Difference Between Briefing a dance and Recapping a Dance

    Malcolm  Brown wrote:
    
    > While I have no objection to a brief re-cap, I really  cannot see the
    > justification for anything more. Presumably it is  possible to get hold of
    > the programme, and the instructions, before  going to the dance - what is
    > wrong in putting in a little homework, or  even learning the dances while
    > travelling to the  dance?
    
    Anselm (in Germany) and others (in the UK, Austria, Monaco,....) endorsed  
    this comment, while some comments from the US seem to be going the other  way.  
    Someone said that there could be a cultural  difference, related to the way 
    children are educated. 
     
    Maybe.  But I wouldn't want the impression to get around that, over  this 
    side of the pond, dancers aren't willing or able to study a  briefing booklet, or 
    look up a dance in Pilling, or google it  up on the internet.
     
    When I began dancing SCD in earnest (in New York) I would spend hours  before 
    a dance studying the briefing booklet, using red and white dice to help  me 
    figure out what the instructions meant.  (I have five red dice for the  women, 
    and five white dice for the men, so I can cope with any dance up to  five 
    couples.)   Plus I could talk to other dancers and discuss  any queries I had, and 
    maybe walk through some tricky bits, plus sometimes  there were official 
    walk-throughs in the afternoon beforehand,  plus sometimes the weekend teachers 
    would teach a dance  in class.  I need these props less now, but I do always 
    study the  booklet - or look up the dances in the various ways that are open to 
    all of  us.   
     
    In short, by the time a ball or dance finally arrives, all I want and all I  
    expect is a crisp and accurate reminder of how the dance goes.  A  short 
    briefing or recap, in other words.  (These terms, along with that of  
    'talk-through' are synonymous to me.)   
     
    Frankly, I feel I owe it to my fellow dancers to study the dances as well  as 
    I can before a dance.   And I can confirm that there are  many dancers on 
    this side of the Atlantic, including renowned teachers (native  American born as 
    well as UK-born), who lament the trend towards long  and repetitive "briefs" 
    and in fact are quite militant about it.  They  feel it discourages 
    self-reliance, and helps perpetuate a vicious  circle of dancers not being well prepared 
    and MCs providing longer and  longer "briefs".  
     
    By the way, Anselm, that sticky dots idea seems rather neat.  I  might try it 
    sometime.
     
    Chris (New York)
    
    Anselm wrote "everyone is given 
    a number of little sticky dots (like  3), which they can then put beside the 
    dances on a huge copy of the ball  programme (stuck on a nearby wall) that 
    they are most desperate to walk  through. The top few dances (like 3) with 
    most dots nearby are the ones that  will be walked through."
     
          

Previous Message Next Message