Have you ever asked yourself this question? Seems like common sense, right? Show up to class, learn some moves, meet some people, feel awesome! A great experience needs some self-awareness and awareness of others. Let's look at this a little closer.
Firstly, why do we even learn to dance?
8 REASONS WE LEARN TO DANCE (VOLUNTARILY)
There are umpteen reasons but here are 10 common ones.
IT'S ME TIME
When we choose do so something like dance, we look for an experience that will satisfy our needs, and wants so we can feel great. Dance has tons to offer...the music, the movements, the people energy, the vibe. Feel energized not just after class, but in the moment. Let all that goodness into your soul. It's ME time :) And on days you need some extra energy, the music, dance and fellow students can help lift your spirits!
IT'S US TIME TOO!
Our sheer presence in the room impacts the overall vibe of the class. We feed off energy AND we create energy. Sometimes we're so into our own experience that we forget about others. They may be having a blast, totally lost, killing' it, or struggling to stay focused. Your smile or encouragement might be that thing that changes their experience for the better.
HOW YOU CAN CONTRIBUTE TO A GREAT VIBE IN A DANCE CLASS
Let these ideas marinate for a bit. We all can improve our self-awareness and awareness of others. In dance, especially in Latin street dances, the experience is shared with partners, team mates, instructors, and friends! Radiate the your best energy and create an authentic joy that will keep you and others around you smiling.
Latin Dance festivals have been around for more than 20 years now. In that time, they’ve grown from one festival every few months for the whole world, to 4-7 festivals every weekend in different cities around the world, at the same time. Our dance communities have exploded into an international network with dancers demanding more - it's a "buyer's market" with so many options out there. Festivals must meet or exceed those expectations in order thrive, or even just survive. Some events deliver on expectations, the great ones over-deliver, but unfortunately many have not yet delivered on some basic requirements. It takes time and experience to get it right, and every year is a learning experience. Let’s help our event organizers knock it out of the park to make our experiences awesome, and their event as successful as possible.
Make your guests happy and get some FREE promotion! While we know we can't make every dancer happy every time, here’s our "Top 10 ways to satisfy a dance festival crowd" to get you started 😀.
And let's not forget to take care of your locals. Often, out of town guests get treated better than the local community. Locals are valuable ambassadors, and without them, there would be no local community. Where possible, work with them, involve them, appreciate them. They’ll be more inclined to promote the event to friends. Locals are excited to experience some "fresh blood" at their local congress so give them reasons to help promote it. Guests who travel to your city also want to experience it – the food, the weather, the sights, and the dancers who make up the community. An event well-attended by the locals speaks volumes!
Kudos to promoters who put in the effort (blood, sweat and tears...literally) to organize festivals with the intention of giving their communities the opportunity to learn, be inspired and entertained by the best in the business, to meet new people and enjoy sharing that with other danceaholics. Great events are not made over night. Nail the basics and you're off to a great start!
How does your local dance festival rate? Did we miss anything? Please comment below!
QUESTION FOR THE READERS: Which festivals around the world over-deliver on these basics?
Caryl Cuizon, iFreeStyle.ca Co-founder
We’ve all heard the saying “the follower is at the mercy of the leader”, and to a great extent it’s true. We’re supposed to follow his choice of moves, how and when he wants to do it. And when feels good, it’s oh sooo good – it flows effortlessly, it’s musical, it’s playful and she can’t wait for the next dance. As followers, we seek those leaders who we connect with, who adapt to our skill level but can challenge us, those who share a similar groove, taste for musical style and enjoys interacting with us, not just dancing AT us. Every follower has her own special mix of traits that has her craving for more. It’s not necessarily about being the fanciest, it’s about creating an experience. Hopefully it’s a good experience, but sometimes it’s not 😬. Fellas, there’s some really basic things that will turn off a woman, so pay attention and steer clear of the “Top 8 Reasons She Hopes You Won’t Ask Her for a Second Dance”.
A huge thank you to all the ladies who contributed to this list :) Did we miss any? Comment below!
8 Reasons He Won't Ask You for a Second Dance
Caryl Cuizon, iFreeStyle.ca Co-founder
Ladies… so you think you had a super fun dance with a great dancer. But you wonder why he never asks you for a second dance. Most guys won’t tell you why, but here are some common reasons…
So girls, let's do a self-check every now and then, and make some adjustments as needed. Let your dancing speak for itself and make him want to come back for more! Happy dancing!
Thank you to all the men who shared their stories and opinions over the years! Let's make our dance experiences even better :)
Fellas, did we miss any? Comment below!
Related blogs:8 Reasons She Hopes You Won't Ask for a Second Dance
Caryl Cuizon, iFreeStyle.ca Co-founder.
(repost from 2014)
We live in the era of instant gratification.
We want to see results ASAP, right now… yesterday even.
We like challenge, but don't let your ego get in the way of your own growth. When it comes to dancing, it’s a bad idea to skip or rush through learning the fundamentals.
If you want to know why, READ ON. While the reasons can apply to dances in general, we’ll focus on the Latin street dances – salsa, bachata, cha cha.
5 REASONS WHY INVESTING TIME IN LEARNING THE BASICS IS A GOOD IDEA
The basic steps, timing, and technique in dance provide a foundation for EVERYTHING that you’re going to learn going forward. With great fundamentals, you’ll acquire knowledge and skills that can serve as “short cuts” to learning new things. You’ll ALREADY understand and can execute the most elementary skills like timing, lead and following technique, weight transfer so you can focus on what’s NEW.
Stay focused on the goal..."To be a better dancer". Be patient. LEARN YOUR BASICS. Practice your basics. Enjoy the rewards in the long term :) You and your partner will thank you for it!
Caryl Cuizon, iFreeStyle.ca co-founder.
Various authors including Caryl Cuizon, co-founder of iFreeStyle.ca Latin Dance Company.