International Ballroom Dancing

Amidst work and my other hobbies such as computer gaming, anime, reading, and of course, sitting on my butt and surfing the internet all day, I have found enough free time to take up a new personal interest: ballroom dancing. More accurately I should say I had to sacrifice some net surfing time (mostly wasted time) for dancing. I first started ballroom dancing on the request by one of my friends during late last summer, the ulterior motive being to try to introduce new women in my life. I reluctantly accepted and attended three classes over the summer. Unfortunately at that time I could not find a dedicated partner, and students without a dedicated partner could sometimes end up dancing by themselves during class, which isn’t very fun nor educational. It wasn’t until a few months later in the middle of last October that, once again, on the request of a friend of a friend, I went back to try ballroom dancing again. This time, I found a reliable and dedicated partner, and have been regularly attending classes and learning international ballroom dancing ever since.
As to why I stuck to this interest, me, being the prudent person that I am, once I had my dependable partner, started doing research on the dances we were learning. And during my research it wasn’t particularly hard to stumble upon videos of high level and competitive ballroom dancing, and I quickly realized the elegance, beauty, and complexity of this pastime and sport. First hand witness of high level ballroom dancing in upper level classes and parties further solidified my interest in this pastime. Ballroom dancing is a very elaborate form of physical communication between (traditionally) a man and a woman. To paraphrase what Glen Brennan once said in a beginner’s class: “There is no feminism/feminists in ballroom dancing.” The man is almost always in command, and the girl follows, and something as subtle as slightly turning the hand of the lady may indicate the next move(s) for couple. To want to do a particular move and give the wrong signal, or for the lady, to misinterpret the signal, could mean total disaster. To see high level partners dance with such eloquence and grace is a sight to behold. And it is all the more impressive when the dancing floor is packed with couples, and all of them somehow manage to avoid hitting each other, and still be able dance fluidly and within the rules of the particular dance.
My partner and I have resolved to eventually finish the gold star classes, the very highest level class offered by the place we are learning from. I hope to one day dance as elegantly and as disciplined as the gold levels and the competitors. For now we are merely in the bronze, hitting people left and right, and screwing up even the most basic steps. I can safely say, I have zero talent in dancing, and nor do my partner. Hope she doesn’t read this and realize who I am…

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Published in: on February 15, 2011 at 9:39 pm  Leave a Comment  

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