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Re: Arthur Murray Showcase
Posted by Anonymous
7/31/2006  12:34:00 PM
anon,

The lady friend that is preparing for the showcase is also my dance partner.
She has a very sketchy background in dance. She is from E. Europe and danced folk and ballroom with a traveling company-had never done any competition, social dancing, or ever heard of a showcase until moving here 7 years ago. She had never had a private lesson. They were just assigned a partner and went to work. All of their lessons were very demanding group lessons. They did lots of solo drilling, class drilling, and the teacher was very much a dictator. All of the dance was choreographed with a group--she said she did a Jive routine once that lasted 7 minutes.

When we started dancing together I was a total beginner and she was more advanced than me. She attended private lessons, but they were about 65% for me--and I paid for them.

Now she is paying for her own private lessons and possibly doing this showcase. She says she did Int. Latin at a high level about 23 years ago, but has forgotten most of it. She could't remember a hockey stick. She is finding out that she is weak in lots of technique issues. She is not a beginner in some ways, but she is like starting over with these Latin dances and the very specific footwork and technique. She knows the syllabus, but it gets mixed up with time and different language. We competed recently in Int Latin and this helped her realize that she needed some work. We did American Rhythm for years and have switched to Int. Latin recently. I am way ahead of her in some ways since I have been taking lessons, competing, and working with my teacher partner for about 1 1/2 years.

We had lots of problems and wasted lesson time on choreograpy issues. She is very picky about what figures she will dance. Lots of lesson time was wasted on this using my dime.

I watched her last lesson and she is improving drastically. It's funny to watch and listen to the process. Her lesson costs about $65 per hour and she is on a tight budget and is very frugal.
Guess she wants the teacher to read her mind on acceptable choreography just for her. I think now she has given up on any type of choreography and is settling for him to just help with the basic technique on each latin dance. I am very happy that she is taking private lessons now. I take from the same teacher and at some point we may split a lesson. We plan on competing again in May. The interest in private lessons for her are to help prepare her to be a dance teacher.
Re: Arthur Murray Showcase
Posted by Carie
8/12/2013  6:09:00 PM
I have been dancing for 4 years now but my partner is moving away. Needless to say, I am looking for a new male lead who is 5ft.9in. or taller (to make turns etc. easier). I have taken 4 yrs. of lessons plus weekly practices & dances. I am not perfect but together am willing to do my share.4436MJ

If anyone out there is interested or knows where I should look, please e-mail me @
613-273-2067.
Re: Arthur Murray Showcase
Posted by danz4joy
8/12/2007  2:12:00 PM
For the average student, a showcase will take 10 additional lessons even if you are not learning very difficult steps. Performance dancing is very different than social dancing. You have to memorize the choro=eography, and work on technique and presintation. But if you put in the commitment and practice time, I assure you that you will be happy with the outcome, and you will learn alot in that dance.
Re: Arthur Murray Showcase
Posted by danz4joy
8/12/2007  2:15:00 PM
Everyone makes mistakes and messes up during performances. That's par for the course. Embrace that and use it as a tool for learning. just like in life, learn from your mistakes and mishaps in dancing. they will make you a stronger dancer, and will make you more confident.
Re: Arthur Murray Showcase
Posted by TomT
9/6/2010  6:15:00 PM
You mentioned that there are three levels of dance lessoning. The first level being when a student dances with a teacher. What are the other levels?
Re: Arthur Murray Showcase
Posted by Anon3
9/11/2006  6:51:00 PM
Emanon 56. How different it is from some other countries where the competition couples belong to a club and would not allow any person on the floor if they weren't ready. It does nothing for the image of dancing to see people struggling, in some cases it is as a dancer embarrassing to watch.
Re: Arthur Murray Showcase
Posted by Anonymous
6/5/2007  6:34:00 PM
when are people going to wake up to themselves and realise AM is not a real dance studio. A friend of mine is on this site daily and brought my attention to a number of topics relating to AM. As a former am teacher I had a background in Ballet, tap and jazz and after a knee reconstruction I applied for a job at AM I was shown DVD's on how to learn the dances and additionally I was taught by a more experienced teacher in full view of the students waiting around for their lessons. AS a teacher we were told we can only teach 5 steps per level or if a student increased their payment amounts, this in turn held many of the students back. The teachers are not paid ridiculous amounts of money either.
no subject
Posted by Screwed
6/26/2007  2:56:00 PM
The only time when my AM dance instructor teaches me anything new is when I sign up for a Showcase. There are two groups of students at AM, those who compete/participate and those who do not compete/participate in the showcases and comps.

I noticed that those of us who only take 1 private per week do not learn any new routines at all. Where as those who particpate in showcases ($1000) and comp ($3000-$4000) are taught short routines of about 4-5 new steps.

I am screwed because I spent about $150 per week on my private and my instructor wont show me any routines, just one step per lesson without linking it into other steps to form a short routine. If I want to learn how to link a couple of steps together, then I have to sign up for a showcase or comp, which means I will have to spend ($1000-$4000) on top of my weekly private lessons.

I have been told by others at the studio that if I join a showcase or comp, then I will have to take more than 1 private per week to learn and practice the material. They recommend 3 or 4 privates per week.

This would mean that I would end up spending $5000 to learn short routines for a showcase and $10,000 to learn short routines and participate in a comp.

Please help.

Screwed.
no subject
Posted by Ellen
6/27/2007  1:37:00 PM
Sounds like you're at one of the less than great AMs.

I'd recommend shopping around to check out other studios when you get close to the end of your current contract. Be sure to check out indpendent studios in your area. In general, independent studios are more likely to individualize instruction to each student, rather than having a set structure for all. There are several ways to find studios:

-- The Dance Directory on this site

-- accessdance.com

-- the Yellow Pages under dance studios or dance instruction

-- Google "ballroom dance" and the name of your town.

Most studios have an introductory package where you can sample a private lesson or two for a reasonable cost. Or you could take a group class just to get a feel for the atmosphere of the place.

Before you commit to anything, discuss your dance goals with the new instructor. Ask about costs for showcases, etc. When I first started at my independent studio, I took the intro package, like it and signed up for a 5 lesson package, then a larger package, etc. I've been there 5 years and they have always taught me what I wanted to learn and as much as I could learn. Never any sales pressure.

Good luck!
no subject
Posted by brdSteven
7/1/2007  12:07:00 PM
"my instructor wont show me any routines, just one step per lesson without linking it into other steps to form a short routine."

Seems to me the mistake your instructor is really making is not helping you see that what you think you want is bad for you.

A dancer with good fundamental skills - including leading - can put any number of single patterns together in ways that are interesting and fun for both himself and his partner; he can create a unique experience each time he steps on the floor. This is a gentleman a lady will look forward to dancing with.

A dancer with poor skills but possessing a collection of "short routines" will tend to use the same material in the same way every time, with unimaginative basic steps acting as filler. The result can be pretty tedious.

Imho, a private lesson should not be wasted on showing how various patterns can be used in combination - group classes are better for that. Instead, a private lesson is best used to do what cannot be done in a group class - professional diagnoses and treatment of what needs improvement in an individual's own dance fundamentals. It could be posture, balance, lead/follow, timing, styling ... but rarely should it be about mere choreography.

When you get right down to it, the choreography that comes with signing up for a Showcase is essentially a way to put an exciting wrapper around very intensive work on the fundamentals. The student should be a better dancer after going through the process, but not because of knowing "a routine".

Steven

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