And You Know You Must Shuffle Along, Join The Parade

This week was even quieter for me in the dance world than last week. What? How is that even possible? It wasn’t entirely intentional on my part. I ended up declining to go out last weekend so that I could get some things done around my house, so that part was totally my choice.

Monday night though I was finishing things up to get out of the house to go to class when I got a text from Lord Junior asking if I was planning to be there that night. I told him that I was going to leave in a bit, but then he said that all the other regulars from class had sent him messages before he contacted me to say that they weren’t going to be able to make it. I was the only person he hadn’t heard from, and since I don’t spend too much time on Latin for any serious reason, he said that if it was just going to be me he was going to cancel class and get out of the studio early that night. So I unexpectedly got to have my Monday night free.

That leaves Wednesday night’s Standard Technique class as the only dance thing of note that I went to all week. This week we opted to look at Viennese Waltz for a bit, spending the first half of class on practicing our basic techniques in the Reverse and Natural Turns and then switching to something different from the American Viennese Waltz world for the second half.

Every time we work on Viennese Waltz, Lord Junior likes to start off by having everyone in class line up along one side of the floor and dance the basic turns on our own for a little while. I think he likes to do this because it’s kind of funny to him that the ladies in class who have been dancing a long time have trouble doing these basic figures on their own. Specifically, it’s not the figures that they mess up on, it’s the alignments when lining up to start. When he tells us that we are all going to start backing diagonal center to do Natural Turns, he always seems to have to stop and point out that at least one of the ladies in class is facing the wrong direction. This week it was Bony that was the unlucky one that got called out.

It is kind of funny… just a little bit.

Once we got done going over all the serious technical points for practice, we switched over to American style to look at a figure that Lord Junior said a coach he had worked with recently showed him a fun new way to get into: the Same Foot Lunge. To build up some momentum though, we started out on the far side of the room in Shadow Position and did two Open Natural Turns across the short side, and then the Lead would do two steps in Canter Timing to get back on the opposite foot as the Follow while we led them through an Outside Turn, putting us in an opened Promenade Position. This allowed us to do one set of Promenade and Counter Promenade Runs down the long wall, closing back to dance position with a half Open Natural Turn afterward.

Here is where we added on the Same Foot Lunge. To get into it, the Lead would take a step back on the left foot and then plant the right foot and pivot on it, pointing the left leg out to the side as we turned. The Follow here would go into a half turn to line themselves up perpendicularly with wherever the Lead’s body was when he finished rotating, and then step back on their right leg to create the line. Because this is Viennese Waltz we held this line for a whole bar of music – longer than we might hold the lunge in a slow Waltz, but since the tempo of the music is pretty fast it still goes by quick.

To come out, Lord Junior had the Leaders shift their weight onto our left leg while turning the Followers across our bodies. As they got to our left side, we would shift our weight back to our right leg as the Follower got onto their left open us up into Side-by-Side Position. From here we could use a number of simple actions that you’ve probably done before to close back into normal dance position and continue on down the floor as desired.

And that’s really all I made notes about this week to remember later! This next week should be more exciting, I think. There is a party going on Saturday night that I have already been asked to make an appearance at, so I can’t just stay home by myself this coming weekend. Plus, hopefully everyone is feeling better so all the classes I normally go to during the week happen next week. We’ll see how things go.

Also (and this is kind of exciting)… I maaaaaay have agreed to be in a holiday parade… to do some ballroom dancing-related things in the parade. Whaaaaa? Yeah, that’s a thing that’s totally going to happen as long as the weather is good on parade day. It’s not going to be this weekend, but it’s coming up soon. I’m not exactly sure how exactly ballroom dancing in a parade is going to work yet, but it sounded like it might be super ridiculous, so I couldn’t not be a part of the group!

Stay tuned and I’m sure I’ll tell you all about it right here once it happens.

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