Floor Craft, learning the rules of the dance floor.
Floorcraft means possessing the ability to navigate the floor in a graceful way while avoiding bumping into other dancers. I also like to extend its definition to a more defensive realm, where leads protects their follows from being ran into.
H.P. Floorcraft (what not to do)
We’ve all danced next to the one couple that flails around with more limbs than is anatomically possible. Whether it’s a beginner lindy hopper throwing charlestons as if they were karate kicks, the overly lyrical duo trying to swat flies out of midair with too much arm flair, or a showboat doing an aerial, we’ve all been kicked, stamped on, jabbed, prodded and tripped up.
Simply speaking, dancers...
So with Christmas fast approaching us, we decided to upload the next podcast a little early. This time we're talking with the mild manner Dave Madison :P We go over topics such as sf blues history, Dave's views about dance competition, and safety on the dance floor.
Heres the Herrang Video we mentioned on the podcast. Again this is only a spoof please please please don't do this out on the dance floor: http://youtu.be/Z_rDNU2JVJs
Blues Dance World Podcast will be specifically focused on topics of blues and fusion dance culture. These podcasts will be posted once a month, so keep an eye out for them.
Main Host: Hafsa
Producer: Andy Lee
Ouch! That swollen shin, scraped foot, sore shoulder... these are not things that we should be experiencing after a blues dance, right? Dancing is and should be an enjoyable physical experience for all, allowing us to leave the dance floor feeling happy not only from social interaction, but also from physical movement.
That being said, it can be difficult to avoid injury at times on the social dance floor. I have heard many people complain that a lead “yanks” their arm, that another couple on the dance floor was not watching where they were going, which resulted in feet being stepped on, and plenty of other stories of dangerous encounters on the dance floor.
What to do? Should we just try...
Yes. Wait, that’s not an answer? Okay then. I can acknowledge that there may be some inappropriate places/times/situations for a blues or fusion dance bomb—maybe in the audience during a Bolshoi ballet, at a Catholic funeral mass, in the aisles of Congress in the middle of the State of the Union address, or during a married couple’s first dance . . . However, there are so, so many places/times/situations in which it is perfectly fine. I’ve danced in coffee shops and at gas stations, in the back room of an upscale restaurant, under statues, on boardwalks, on the top levels of parking lots, in diners, in a government building, in front of monuments, in local parks, in a mall,...
A day after The Doctors 50th Anniversary, and a few days till Thanksgiving, Blues Dance World bring you our second podcast with amazing Nicole Trissell. With her fresh win at Rose City Blues Jack and Jill Competition, she sits down with us to discuss her background in dance, consent culture, and her involvement in the San Francisco Blues/Fusion dance scene.
These podcasts will be posted once a month, so keep an eye out for them.
Main Host: Hafsa
Producer: Andy Lee
Guest: Nicole Trissell
Photo by Noah Nethero
This past weekend I had the privilege of attending Rose City Blues in Portland Oregon. It was a bit of a surprise since up until the Monday before the event I did not think I would be able to make it. My pass of choice was FOR DANCE S ONLY the dance only one. I like staying up late dancing, but being able to sleep in, so I have stopped attending many of the workshops during weekends such as this. I did however get to sit in on several of them and was very impressed with what I saw. The dynamic teaching duos of Amanda Gruhl and Chris Mayer and Ruby Red and Ted Maddry were not only engaging...
Photo by Shane Karns
There is an age old debate in social dance scenes. When, if ever, is teaching okay on the dance floor? Ask a dozen different dancers and you’ll probably get a dozen different replies. Some people forbid it outright, some people feel like it’s their duty. Most people fall somewhere in between. Here we’ll discuss the merits of both ends, as well as the most common solutions to the issue.
On the Dance Floor
In many dance scenes, any kind of teaching on the dance floor is considered rude. Especially if there are lessons before the dance, many blues scenes try to keep a clear line between class time and dance time. In...
Drinking and dancing? Good or bad?
This is an blurb about drinking in public, so the usual disclaimers apply: no driving, moderation, know your limits, don’t mix with medicine, etc.
A wise man once said that life is always better after slightly less than two drinks. Ok, it was actually the leader of the Inibriatti (from That Mitchell and Webb Look), but the point still applies. A drink or so can ease nerves and act as social lubricant. More than two drinks and, boom, apocalypse, again, according to the Inibriatti.
The Good (ah, there’s that swaying feeling)
Some dancers dive right into the social dance floor with remarkable ease; take to it like fish to vodka, I mean water. Others, me included,...
Fusion, as a partner dance concept, is a very new thing. It's so new that we are still debating what the word means. This debate is complicated by the fact that many people do not even realize that there are multiple definitions being used. By my count, there are three distinct camps in the Great Fusion Debate.
Andrew Sutton, one of the first people to discuss fusion and an early promoter, instructor and organizer of the Fusion Exchange, defines fusion as "fusing your movement to your partners movement to the music". This is the philosophical definition. It does not define a dance, but a way of dancing. (Or, more specifically, a way of conceptualizing partner dance.) In this definition, fusion is a way of...
“How long have you been dancing?” I’ve been asked that question hundreds of times while dancing with a new lead. It’s always stymied me why that would matter. A much better question to ask a newly met lead/follow would be, “When was the last time you took a class? What did you learn?”
Years of dancing frequently equate to better dancing, but that is not always the case. Once the first rush of passion for this new hobby (or new style of dance) passes, many people stop attending classes, stop improving, and reach a plateau of dance quality. Often, it’s scary and difficult to learn new things, and without the excitement and interest generated by the freshness of a new...