Dance · Retrospective

Dance Retrospective 2012

“I can’t believe it’s 2013” has probably escaped my lips over a hundred times over the past three days. 2012 was (for the most part) an amazing year. I went to Europe (Italy, Austria, the Netherlands, and Sweden) and South America (Peru/Machu Picchu), I was a tour guide in a palace, I ran two successful dance events, I got to spend a weekend with one of my dance idols, I was challenged by school and was even scared of failing a class (but ultimately I kicked it’s ass!), I entered my senior year of college, my best friend from high school moved to my city so I got see her more, I got addicted to Mass Effect, I’ve made some amazing friends and have gotten closer to some old ones. Ultimately, I 2012 will be a good reminder of how wonderful my life is and why I should be thankful every day.

Now that that required sentiment is out of the way, I can actually get down to brass tax: Dance Retrospective 2012!

Last year I asked my friend Jony (that’s how he spells Johnny) to be filmed dancing with me because (1) my family wanted to see me dance and (2) I had an idea for a project. I would film myself dancing on the 31st of every year to chronicle my progress as a dancer. This is the first year I’m able to do such a comparison and after the initial “Ohgodohgodwhy” moments of watching myself dance, it’s pretty cool to see how much I’ve changed just in skill.

So without further or do:

December 31, 2011

December 31, 2012


So ignoring all of the superfluous things (like my fashion choices) and the fact that you can barely hear the music in the second video (actually, watching it without music really highlights my dancing and forces me to really look at my technique, connection, tension, etc).

Also, these leads are very different. Jony* is around my level and we have danced many times before (and after) that video was taken. I literally just met Jon Tigert, and had little clue to who he was (he’s the one in the black shirt and suspenders), and it’s very clear he is a much better dancer than me.

Now at this point I will be dancing for about three years late this January. So I think I do pretty well given the circumstances in each video. I think that I have drastically improved in technique over the course of the year (my shoulder doesn’t creep up nearly as much). I still drop a few of the leads and I cringe every time I pull a face.

My posture has gotten better, as have my swivels and styling. But I do remember feeling more tense when I tried styling that was new to me so I need more practice with relaxed connection in the teres major and minor (I think, I know it’s somewhere around there. I can definitely point to it/them).

My turns have been my¬†Achilles heal since the beginning (keeping pulse and not breaking connection and turning at the speed given), it’s still something that I clearly need to work on (see: second video ~2:00). I’ve been pleased at the progress of what my free arm looks like, though there are moments of “ughwhatwasthat”. Also, there are some moments with Jon where are height made some things difficult. I must ask the Stricklands if there was anything I could have done to have made it at least look better if not fix it.**

However, Jon doesn’t look like he’s having nearly as much fun as Jony, so there you go.

I did want to film again with Jony, but communication was difficult that weekend as we rarely saw each other off the dance floor. Maybe I can get together with him another time to get a better comparison.

Both are great examples of the evolution of my dancing. I can’t wait to see what 2013 has in store for me!

*I will never not read this in my head as “joe-nee”.

**It’s too easy to blame your partner for awkward moments. Even if it is the other person’s fault, you can only fix you. So think about what you could’ve done better to communicate. (Blaming the partner is also a heinous habit that one should never fall into.)

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