Much like I thought, not many people were around this past weekend, so our get together on Friday turned out to be pretty small. Before the social dance, we didn’t have enough people to run the normal two group classes that we have on Fridays, so Lord Fabulous decided to keep everyone together as one big(ish) group and do a one-off class of some more advanced dance styles that, of the people in attendance that night, only Sparkledancer, Gable and I had covered previously. The majority of the class was spent looking at “Viennese Waltz”. To keep things simple for all the newcomers attending, what we actually did was more like hesitation Waltz – quarter turns from slow Waltz with hesitations as the first step, all done at Viennese Waltz tempo. Really, I think we were doing this as an excuse for them to play several versions of O Holy Night and watch the newcomers stumble along in time to the music.
Later in the evening, a short while into the social dance, there was a special event that was going on over at the Great Dance Hall by the Lake that Lord Fabulous was excited to see. Through some technical wizardry, we were able to connect to them and have a video feed displayed live on the television that hangs on the studio wall, allowing all of us at the Land of the Loft to watch as two of Lord Fabulous’ former students got engaged. The story we were told was that both of these individuals had previously gone through bad breakups, and since they both were taking lessons at the studio Lord Fabulous helped them move on and find each other. So it was only fitting that they get engaged at the place where they had first met. The Princess and the King had made their way down to attend the festivities and consecrate the event, allowing all the peoples of the Dance Kingdom to rejoice. It was nice to see, but the person holding the camera over at the Great Dance Hall by the Lake kept pointing it down toward the floor, so we ended up watching wood a lot.
We also were treated to a performance by Lord Fabulous and Lady Q. They had put together a choreographed Viennese Waltz routine (also to O Holy Night. I’m starting to think that at Christmas that’s the only Viennese Waltz song that gets played). Many of the figures that they used I recognized as things that Lord Fabulous had been working on with Sparkledancer and I in our coaching lesson. In fact, he specifically mentioned to Sparkledancer the next day while we were working with him that he had choreographed the dance with those figures in it specifically so that we could see them in use. Of course, watching Lord Fabulous lead the figures looked much more effortless than I could probably ever perform when I attempt to lead them, so it was more inspirational than demonstrative.
I don’t know what’s up between me and Viennese Waltz lately. I had thought that I had gotten a pretty good handle on the style. Sure, it was a bit chaotic at times, but if I always made sure to keep an eye on where I was going and anticipate what other people around me could do, generally I could successfully make it around the room looking semi-competent. The new figure that we have been trying to add in to the American Viennese Waltz has really tested that competence. For some reason, when I attempt the steps with a partner, I am back to feeling out of control. I can’t tell if it’s because I just need to practice the figures a million more times, or if there’s something I am actually doing wrong with it, but it’s not a good feeling. We spent the majority of our coaching session this last Saturday working on these new figures just like last week. Over and over again… twinkle to cantor pivots, three-step pivots to throw out, change-of-place to explosion, under-arm turn to run around, a hold… and back to reverse turns. It seems so simple to map it out in my mind, but every time I do it something different happens. Either the throw out is facing the wrong direction, or we turn a different amount on the run around, or the hold at the end has to be longer to get things back in time with the music, or something. Ever feel like you are so close to something, but you just can’t put your finger on what’s going wrong with it? That’s how this figure is making me feel.
Sparkledancer and I are going to get together before our next coaching lesson on Saturday at the studio and attempt to work on this figure for a while again. Maybe if we can get it so that I’m feeling better about it, we can use it while we are out at the New Year’s Eve dance party.
Speaking of which – New Year’s Eve dance party! It’s coming up soon. I hope you got tickets already because I found out the crowd will be limited to 100 people, even though the floor could probably support many more. At this point, pretty much everyone from the Land of the Loft has said they’re going to attend this dance field trip, including a fair number of former members of the Land of the Loft whom I haven’t seen in quite a while. I have no idea what kind of craziness to expect… but I’ll tell you all about it next week!