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  • Writer's pictureChris

Not Your Average Dance Story Part 2

If your not caught up Part 1 is right here.

There is are few things more terrifying then the unknown. Walking into the studio for my first time felt incredibly intimidating, scary yet very inspirational.  Everyone was dressed so nicely, the men in black pants and dress shirts with ties and the women in long flowing skirts moving so incredibly gracefully. I could not believe this new world I was entering,  I was in awe watching the way everyone moved to the music.  I immediately felt a huge sense of doubt in my abilities.  Could I really do all of this?  Just when I thought they would push me onto the floor, instead I was put in front of a tv with a video cassette in my hand and told to learn.  As I pushed the videocassette into the VCR (I know, I know, you're now asking what is a VCR?) The Screen appeared and there they were - two dancers moving to the Foxtrot.  A little puzzled by what I was viewing, I tried my hardest to interpret what was happening.  Knowing what I know now, the video was an eight-measure pattern and terribly long and intricate for a newbie like myself.  Let me just say it took me eight hours to learn a single pattern.  You should also know, I didn’t really dance with a Partner my first week.   They expected me to teach myself and I actually saw their logic and reasoning.  Everyone at the studio always seemed so busy dancing with Students, practicing with their Partners and in meetings to oversee my daily development.  As If I could motivate and teach myself to dance - then it would make their investment in me as a new Teacher - make more sense.

Ballroom Dance Early Image
Early Dance Dance Picture Of Chris Richardson

Then came the moment of truth, when all the hard work and training they'd invested in me - would finally be tested.  I was trying to get into frame -mimicking what I saw in the videos but my partner immediately had a problem.  My body was tense and stiff, and the one thing the videos couldn't  teach me was how to really connect with my dance Partner.  Luckily, she was a great Teacher and abruptly put me in the right position with the correct touch. I then took my first step and then immediately encountered another problem.  I failed to anticipate her next step and failed to move her out of my way and stubbed my toe into her foot. I'd barley taken my first step and somehow couldn’t get anything right. She immediately hugged me into a connection and waited for the music a bit.   Before I knew it she was effortlessly moving me through the steps.   A week before the event I'd practiced alone for more than forty hours with so much grace and ease but my Partner's generosity saved the day.  It was as if I weighted five pounds and she was moving me on a cloud. If I had to pick a moment I fell in love with dance - I think it would have to be that moment.  No, it's not what what you're thinking.  I was in love but not with her, but with dance, the movement, the grace and the fact that a smaller women could move guys around the dance floor with more grace , poise and ease than I could muster in my entire body. That moment made me feel so alive.  Reminiscing as a seasoned Dancer I can acknowledge I took that moment for granted. (especially now that we can’t dance with the yucky yona stopping us).

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