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Men dancing as ladies

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  • ...

    Denise Babin Oct. 15, 2001, 1:25 p.m. (Message 27889)

    This happens often in our class, as the women pair off to get practice 
    dancing as men.  Some of the men forced to dance as women give the paired 
    women good-natured dirty looks.  I generally respond with a good-natured 
    raspberry (I'm a fairly new dancer and really do need the practice), and we 
    all go on to have a good time.
    
    Denise in Milwaukee
  • ...

    Norah Link Oct. 15, 2001, 3:41 p.m. (Message 27890, in reply to message 27889)

    There is one couple in our Branch who occasionally when dancing together
    will dance on opposite sides - in a class, when in an experienced set.  It
    gives them both practice and a challenge.  
    
    I must say, the first time I encountered this was in candidate class.  Both
    then, and in the regular class, the dancers didn't ask permission - they
    just did it.  As a teacher, it's an interesting experience to discover when
    you first notice it and have to figure out whether it is deliberate or a
    mistake. (Candidates aren't above playing tricks to mimic a mistake for
    their classmate, although it is usually confined to step practice.  And
    classes aren't above playing tricks on their teachers!)
    
    cheers,
    Norah (Montreal, QC)
  • ...

    SnowshoeTS Oct. 15, 2001, 4 p.m. (Message 27891, in reply to message 27889)

    Denice speaks of women  dancing together for practice- with the frequent 
    situation of  more women  than men women are often compelled to dance men's 
    side- have pity for the males who seldom get the practice and  therefore 
    provide comic relief when the  imbalance shifts and they dance women's side 
    ;-)
    
    Kirk Bachler
    Twin Cities Branch,Minnesota,USA,RSCDS
  • ...

    dr.rockets Oct. 15, 2001, 9:31 p.m. (Message 27892, in reply to message 27889)

    I'm with a teen class in Lubbock, Texas and there are occasions when we
    wind
    up having a two-man couple.  Our teacher, Darla Granberry, doesn't like
    the 
    shyness exhibit that most of the guys demonstrate and so she said that if
    the 
    guys don't ask the girls to dance with them very soon after a dance is
    called 
    then the girls should ask eachother to dance.  The guys who were slow
    soon 
    learned to ask as quickly as possible.  This tool prooved very effective
    and we
    don't see two male partners very often anymore.  I put this practice to
    good use 
    two days ago at the Houston, TX ball.  This may be helpful in other
    corners of
    the SCD world too, which is why I share it.
    
    We also have the unusual circumstance where there are usually more guys
    than
    girls if there is an imbalance at all.  So, I HAVE had my turn on the
    ladies side 
    and I found it to be quite fun to think backwards and very challenging as
    well.
    
    
    Jonathan Elder 18yrs.
  • ...

    Ken McFarland Oct. 15, 2001, 8:16 p.m. (Message 27895, in reply to message 27889)

    >From: xxxxxxxxxx@xxx.xxx. Kirk wrote:
    >...have pity for the males who seldom get the practice and  therefore 
    >provide comic relief when the  imbalance shifts and they >dance women's 
    >side
    
    One of the best reasons for men to at least consider dancing
    with each other once in a while, is to avoid these episodes of
    comic relief, unless someone has a great desire to look like a fool.
    
    When teaching an intermediate or advanced class in the past, at some point 
    in the course, I would have the entire set change sides, so that
    everyone was doing the dance from the other side. The learning at those 
    times is quicker and of different issues. I saw how the men had increased 
    awareness of the need to give a good leading hand or arm hold, and how the 
    women learned how important it was for them to offer a strong leading hold 
    when they were leading. Infact, all movements that involved 'leading' 
    improved after that class lesson was taught. (For example, allemande has an 
    option for leading, whereas rights and lefts do not, so there was less 
    improvement).
    
    After this lesson I noticed an improvement in the responsiveness (or 
    connectedness) between the two dancers. As a class they all knew the 
    geography of the set better. In some cases I even saw an improvement in 
    covering in reels. And after I had introduced all of them to the idea that 
    they could benefit as a group and as individuals from learning the other 
    side of the dance, they would occasionally choose to do so on their own. Our 
    episodes of comic relief diminished though...
    
    Ken McFarland
  • ...

    mlbrown Oct. 17, 2001, 5:12 p.m. (Message 27920, in reply to message 27895)

    Ken wrote:
    
    > When teaching an intermediate or advanced class in the past, at some point
    > in the course, I would have the entire set change sides, so that
    > everyone was doing the dance from the other side. The learning at those
    > times is quicker and of different issues. I saw how the men had increased
    > awareness of the need to give a good leading hand or arm hold, and how the
    > women learned how important it was for them to offer a strong leading hold
    > when they were leading. Infact, all movements that involved 'leading'
    > improved after that class lesson was taught. (For example, allemande has
    an
    > option for leading, whereas rights and lefts do not, so there was less
    > improvement).
    
    At St Andrews this year the one of the Teacher's classes worked at the dance
    Loch Leven Castle.
    We struggled with it for a fair while before we could all dance it
    reasonably well from either first or second place.
    Having struggled myself when teaching the dance, (we did it first as a
    strathspey, which enabled a few alternative versions - we did an allemande
    at the end to give some sort of progression), I then suggested that we all
    changed sides.
    
    What a shambles!!! I'm not quite sure what the lesson was, other than the
    "teachers" aren't any cleverer than the "taught",  --- and it is still a
    dance where all 4 people need to know what they are doing.
    
    Malcolm
  • ...

    Oliver Thinius Oct. 18, 2001, 5:04 p.m. (Message 27926, in reply to message 27889)

    If they wish to do and do not cause confusion with respect to less
    experienced dancers, let them go ahead with it.
    
    Oliver Thinius
    xxxxxxxx@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx.xx
  • ...

    Ken McFarland Oct. 18, 2001, 6:59 p.m. (Message 27933, in reply to message 27889)

    Malcolm wrote in reply to my suggestion of a possible exercise:
    
    >At St Andrews this year the one of the Teacher's classes worked at the 
    > >dance Loch Leven Castle...
    >What a shambles!!! I'm not quite sure what the lesson was, other than the 
    >"teachers" aren't any cleverer than the "taught", and it is still a
    >dance where all 4 people need to know what they are doing.
    
    I'd like to clarify that my exercise works best for a dance with RSCDS 
    standard formations, at least the first time. I'm not sure that the teacher 
    you refer to above even had the same intention as my exercise, and it does 
    seem like a poor choice for this type of exercise. And yes, you will find 
    fallible teachers on all continents, but I'm glad someone broke out of their 
    pattern and tried something different. :o)
    
    Ken McFarland

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