Saturday, 26 May 2012

Reflections: Entries on Socials archive 1-6

I have discontinued the entries on socials series. I have now compiled them into an archive for future references.

26th May
I felt that I could've done better on the dance floor last night. Especially in WCS, where I kept on breaking my frame for the whip, and traveling out of my slot. One thing I also realised while dancing both salsa and WCS in the same night is that I find it hard to move back into the basic step for salsa and kept on finding tension from the lead right after dancing WCS.

I should also start finding YouTube videos to link here for some west coast swing styling. It's not fun when one is unable to express your interpretation of the music because of the lack of dancing vocabulary. Gonna keep you all posted!

2nd June
Yesterday's socials also happens to be my birthday (not that it's important for my readers to know, but I'm just pointing out that due to this reason, social dancing was more fun and I got to stay past my curfew.) Yep, this swinging salsera's got her game on, but before I talk about my socials, I'll be a shameless promoter and say I've signed up for this.

Hang on Amanda, you haven't been dancing salsa for more than 4 months and you already wanna perform? Well I figure that I should step up my game first before university sinks in. So yeah. I'm going for it. All I gotta worry about is if there'll be equal number of guys who are interested. During salsa socials I also managed to figure out that not all raised hand signals equate to a turn. Strange, I know, but I break my frame and end up doing turns from anticipating the move. I'm probably thinking too much about doing the pattern rather than leaving it up to the leader's discretion.

As for West Coast Swing, I managed to be more brave with styling, and received compliments on that. Less thinking and more feeling works! That and I got a bonus "private" lesson from my instructor on how to maintain my frame on my fingers. So I'm tensing less now, which also means my arms aren't sore (thankfully. How will I type if my arms feel like I've been suspended on pull up bars for hours?) One of my classmates are also brave enough to add his salsa leads into WCS. Great experimental work, really.

To conclude it legs hurt (wish me luck surviving Tap classes today.) But dang it was fun (and tempting to do this every social night.) It's also a wonder how I'm up now typing this away, I should catch up on sleep. Catch you all later!

8th June
Note to self: RELAX! Even if salsa auditions are coming up tomorrow, RELAX!

I can't remember how many spins I done during the salsa socials. I'm still told to relax, but I'm not really getting how relaxing will help me hold my frame. Perhaps it is one of those things where I need to keep on practicing before I can finally get that feeling where I can balance both a relaxed posture and a good frame. One of the main highlights of the night was dancing with a guy who could style like mad while I let my hands get tossed around, and I'm left with that flabbergasted look. I wonder when will JBugs teach the guys to style like that?

I didn't do much swinging last night. But I did try to do some leading moves with a salsa classmate of mine and it's pretty hilarious. While she was able to follow my signals, I think our footwork was messy, but we still had fun.

All in all, I wish I could spend more time during socials last night because I didn't manage to feel that same level of enjoyment as before (please tell me that this isn't the start of a bad addiction.) I had so many things going on: choreographing for my tap dance recital, my internship, and just preparing for the auditions. Why do Fridays always have to end so soon?

23rd June
FINALLY! A SALSA DIP! And I don't mean the sauce dips for nachos, I'm finally lead to the actual move itself. Speaking of which, the lead was really strong. From close hold, he was even able to guide me to do side steps and double back breaks. How awesome is that?! Another awesome part was I also managed to get to know a few girls during yesterday's socials as well, which is quite a rare occurrence, since most of the time I'm paying attention to the guys instead. This sounds politically incorrect. I feel quite rusty with some spinning techniques though, wearing west coast swing heels forges a bad habit of relying on the heel to turn. That's really bad, I need to stop neglecting my actual salsa shoes.

West Coast Swing didn't fare too good with me either. My shoes were annoying while I was swinging, the strap kept on unbuckling, and my constant paranoia of tripping over the strap spoilt a bit of the fun. I should get more holes punched through it, or safety pin it I guess...While I did have tons of fun styling (especially since being introduced to extensions and the 2A class sneak peek,) I've neglected the basics - the flashlight, train tracks, and anchor, oh my. My WCS instructor's words ring true in my head, "You can never practice your anchor enough." Getting critique from him made me realise where I stand - can look good grooving, but totally messing up the footwork LOL. I love critique, seriously. It acts as a good motivator.

Along with that...I unintentionally showered holy water upon one of my leads. (It was accidental, I swear!) I don't recall exactly how it happened, but I think I was anticipating too much and when it didn't go as I expected, the waters flew. Luckily enough it was with one of my established friends. If it had been with that cute stranger I met, I would've died and not update this dance journal/blog!

To end it all, I have no idea how I managed to wake up at 7:15 in the morning, and I still have this funny churning feeling in the stomach like I have some sort of motion sickness. My fingers are crossed that I don't puke out my breakfast during tap class today.

30th June
WOOWHEE another dip! This time in WCS socials, aww yeah. While I was able to have that adrenaline rush (albeit underwhelming when compared to a roller coaster ride) socials didn't feel as fun because my WCS classmates aren't there, le sigh.

However, I came across a new group of people, one of them did ballroom dancing before, and the rest are there just to hang out. So I showed them the ropes of west coast swing, and boy was it hard to explain all the technical details! So I stuck to teaching them footwork and paying attention to the tension (hah, that rhymed.) I felt that I could do a bit better with my anchoring though, along with the styling, I felt like a dancing drunkard.

Along with that, I also tried shutting down my brain for salsa socials, to try and be a zombie that follows what the guy wants you to do, but I guess that gave the impression of me looking really lost to one of my guy friends LOL. I didn't think I was making that many mistakes as I danced that night as well, but I wouldn't be too sure about that.

It was nice meeting new people and showing the ropes. It helps test my patience, and makes me a bit more confident in being a potential dance teacher too. I'm also quite hungover, but I didn't even drink anything more than Coke.

7th July
Yesterday was a big blur. I only recall practicing a Salsa 3 move with some of the Salsa Swingapore team, and it was really complicated - the spinning has to be really quick in order to execute the move and now I can't remember how the hand gestures are done either.

Was I also mixing up salsa with swing yesterday? I guess so. I couldn't even remember the 123, 567 counts yesterday after swinging and then moving into salsa. This is bad. But I can sort of forgive myself for that because my Orientation Camp left me disoriented anyway. I'll try not to be this bad the next week.

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