This weekend felt like old times in that I went out dancing Friday, Saturday, and Sunday- something that would not have been an unusual thing to note just 2 years ago, just business as usual.
Friday was my exploratory dance night soaking in the Semba/Kizomba scene mainly from the sidelines at Oscar B.A.‘s Semba Weekender event with running commentary from fellow Mambo Dancer with Deer in the headlights aplomb, Reggie Reed. The general consensus was that we both were there to challenge our normally confidant dance comfort zone by trying to retrain our dance muscle memory with something new. Absorbing the music while observing the footwork on display by many of the out of town accomplished social dancers in this African dance form was a good exercise in gingerly accepting new rhythms to experiment with in social dance while realizing that the dance mechanics would require the same purposeful practice and effort I have applied FOR YEARS in trying to elevate my Mambo Dance. My grade that night would honestly rate a C MINUS as I pretty much gawked at people all night, made constant comparisons to the Mambo dance scene in terms of dance etiquette, styles, timing, and structure of the dance, while only actually dancing ONE TIME, that’s right. Teacher’s Note- Improvement in attitude, willingness to ACTUALLY expand horizons via some classes, and more exposure to real life trial by fire via social dancing in this art form REQUIRED.
Saturday night was really a work night since it was a Mr. Mambo’s but I did allow myself to socialize way more on the dance floor actually DANCING than usual. Perhaps I was driven by a combination of the music and many new faces and dance styles I haven’t been acquainted with yet- not sure. Whatever the motivation or reasoning, I exercised the Slot dancing muscles quite a bit and came to the same conclusions I usually come to after evaluating my performance during a night of social dancing- I need to work on better pure FOLLOW and my spins. So nothing much has changed in that department. My grade for the night would be B MINUS because I actually danced with more people than usual and tried to seek out new dancers previously unknown to me instead of just going for the Fleet-footed Dancers of KNOWN acclaim- Give this girl a COOKIE.
Sunday afternoon, I decided to go in totally different direction and dance in the elements (OUTSIDE) on a challenging dance floor (THE CONCRETE) in my non approved dance shoes (TENNIS SHOES) so as to not tear up the soles of my Dance shoes to support my friends DJ William Hercules Sanchez and Corina Cristina at their Salsa on the Square Event in Arlington. When I got there, one of the classes were just ending and I hear this good Salsa playing compelling me to dance but no one was DANCING. So after quickly indulging in the common courtesies of human interaction (2 cheek kisses, hugs, the briefest of small talk), I grabbed Anton L. D. Hooper to start dancing by Our LONESOME SELVES and not caring who was watching- PURE JOY. Next song, I grabbed someone else. By my 4th song, I realized that the dance floor of concrete was filling up with dancers- Mission accomplished. I took the Cha Cha Cha class led by the Fabulous Orlando Machuca Jr with his beautiful new dance partner in Looks AND Feminine Dance Style Linda Sainz for the 1st 20 minutes and received an epiphany about the Cha Cha Cha basic from a BEGINNER Class proving once again that the the Learning and Training regimen NEVER ENDS. Of course, not soon afterwards, my natural papparazzi instincts took over and I pulled out my camera to shoot some footage- Some things NEVER CHANGE. But I did try to allow for some more deeper, getting to know you conversations with a few people that lasted LONGER than my usual 3 minute allowance but not to exceed 10 minutes (let’s not go overboard) so there was SOME improvement. I would rate my grade a Solid B for this event.
All in all, a satisfying dance weekend.