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The Double Meaning behind the blog title 'Dream Follower:'
First, for 14 years I was a ballroom & social dance instructor, and have studied both leading and following. I feel that learning to follow is full of nuance and is often misunderstood. I made it one of my personal goals to become a really excellent follow on the dance floor, and will probably talk a lot about the art of following - both in and out of the context of dance.

Second, I am a huge fan of author Michael Ende, probably best known for The Neverending Story. The book is incredible, and the first film captured some of the essence. (Please don't watch the other two films...I urge you to read the book though!) Anyway, at least twice in my life I have been caught in a storm of my own indecision, and my inner Moon Princess yelled to my inner Bastian...'Why don't you do what you dream?' I tear up even now as I write this little blurb. The tension between being practical, keeping my feet on the ground and my head out of the clouds (at the risk of compromising my inner vibrancy, true self, and who knows what else)...and reaching for my true dreams (at the risk of losing everything) is still a very real struggle. In fact, one of those struggles lead to my 14 years of teaching dance, so we can see which voice won the battle that fateful day when I was staring at the want-ad...

And so I strive to be two kinds of Dream Followers in my life. One has to do with connecting with others, and the other has to do with connecting with my inner Moon Princess and the world of possibility that opens when I do...

Friday, April 18, 2014

Dancing Subcultures (A general guide is begun)

I am a pretty seasoned dancer at this point, and have a lot to say on the subject.

I will share some disclaimers along the way, but the biggest disclaimer is that these are my opinions, perceptions and thoughts based on my experience. I reserve the right to be educated, open-minded, and above all I reserve the right to change my mind.

I'm sure I will say some offensive things in the process.

Ok, so I will talk about at least four subcultures:

West Coast Swing
Argentine Tango

It's possible I might throw something in about the country scene at some point, but less likely.

I will try to describe them each in very unforgiving broad strokes this first post, but the first thing I should share is that I absolutely respect and love each culture for different reasons and they have all added to my colorful life.

Ballroom needs to be divided in my mind into three categories. There is studio life, which of course has both students and teachers. There is social scene in the Real World. And there is the competitive training scene, which again is divided in my mind into pro/am and pro/pro categories.

Salsa will mostly be about the club scene, both the dancing and the social aspect though something about the shows and congresses might sneak in.

WC Swing will mostly be about the conventions I've been to, which all have both social dancing and competition plus many classes...

Argentine Tango will be about the scene and the teaching as well...

Actually teaching styles/methods/personalities will be a thread anyway, I can't help it. And so will lead/follow.

I will tag the dance topic posts as "adventures in dance" until I learn a new or better way of sorting...but for now I suppose I will just let you be warned that I have a lot to say on all these topics!

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