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+ View Older Messages

Re: no subject
Posted by paul&dot
12/26/2007  6:46:00 AM
Hi Ellen,
If I suggested that leading and following is not important in Round Dance I certainly did not mean to leave you with that notion. Most of our figures are contact figures and good leading and following techniques is what separates the good from the average dancer. And certainly, it does not hurt to know the name of the figure you are dancing. It does not make you a better dancer but it helps you in other aspects of the activity like reading a dance book. I've yet to see written in a text book words like, “Let's do, you know, that figure we learned last week.” And regarding you reply about belly rubbing. I know many dancers that have spend half their wealth learning how to do ‘thing' correctly. It is the number-one, no-named figure in the social dancing world. Take me to your social dance club, let me put a piece of Night-CLub Two-Step music on and I'll point out to you half the people doing the famous belly rub.

Re: no subject
Posted by Serendipidy
12/23/2007  4:17:00 PM
Hi. Not knowing some of the names used I take it that what you call Round Dancing is actually Sequence Dancing which first originated in London in 1900 That is every couple are doing the same steps in sequence. Each dance has a name, and is usually 16 bars in length. It is absolutely essencial that the music is phrased correctly Anybody who wishes to find one of the Sequence Dancers site all they need to do is Google Sequence Dancing. A good one to check out is Sea Breeze at Redcliffe QLD. There are literaly 100's of different dances, and there is some sort of competition in composing new dances which happens in the UK.. I popped into one of these dances only last Wednesday. I counted a 150 dancers there. Written on a board were the dances to be danced. I didn't even know the name of most of them let alone how the steps went. This is absolutely true. There were two people not on the floor. Myself and a lady who I found out had a problem with her ankle. I can do all of the International Style dances. As well as all of the Competition Dances in Australian New Vogue, also Argentine Tango and the usuall Street Latin Salsa and so on. There is a different world out there if you look around. It is apparent that this type of dancer wouldn't go to watch a competition if you paid them , and are not the least bit intetrested in correct footwork or alignaments or correct posture. Also Google English Sequence Dancing.The 8th one down is worth reading. Especially the part which tells the advantages of knowing the steps before they are led, as opposed to freestyle where the man has to lead.
Re: no subject
Posted by paul&dot
12/23/2007  5:42:00 PM
Hi back,
I can not say for certain that Round Dancing and Sequence Dancing is the same or akin. I do know that Round Dancing is International and is being danced in Japan, Europe, down under and other places. In most countries the cues are all given in English.
But responding to some of your previous comments, you may have a bit of mistaken belief about Round Dance. In theory, nothing in Round Dancing has to be memorized except the figures. Certainly not the entire 8-16 bar routines. Each next figure is usually spoken or cued approximately one-half measure before the current figure is scheduled to be completed. Cueing more one figure ahead is not considered good cueing. Most figures are a single measure but may be two, three or four or more measures in length and a single name to convey the entire figure. The ending direction and any change of dance position is usually given as well as the figure. These directional or positional cues most likely will be a conveyed during the time the figure in given but could come during the last measure of a multi-measure figure. Round Dance figures are based on International Style Ballroom but over the years, more rhythms and styles have infiltrated the curriculum. Also, chorographers are experimenting more with open work which opens up the entire American repertoire to the Round Dance World.

Being more astute to the International family of figure names, one of the first things I do when I observe the Variation of the week is to take Jonathan's American Overview and try to translate it into the International Language. Sometime I cannot do this from the written overview but I almost always translate after I watch the video. That way, I can take this sequence to the ballroom studio or dance club and perform from memory because I know the variation in a language I speak.

There is a proposal in the works to change the name of Round Dance to International Choreographed Ballroom. Because more and more Round Dancers are taking ballroom this makes more sense than using a name that is associated with Square Dancing is so many people's minds. A few of the Ballroom Professional are putting their fingers into the Round Dance arena as well. Recently, Charlotte Jorgensen choreographed two Round Dance Waltzes that were taught at a Round Dance Festival. She used a phantom writer for the written cues. Not much different than what I do with the Variation of the Week.

So you can see, we are not that far apart. We live on the same planet, we dance to the same music we just speak a little bit different language.

Re: no subject
Posted by Serendipidy
12/26/2007  9:07:00 PM
Guys. I'm still trying to work out is Round Dancing just an American name for Sequence Dancing. The name is completely foreign to me. Are you all on the floor doing the same dance all using the same timing and alignements.Do the dances, have just to name one , names like Honeysuckle Waltz. In which the partner always stays in contact with their partner. No solo turns or underarm turns. This is Sequence Dancing.
Re: no subject
Posted by SmoothGeezer
12/26/2007  10:09:00 PM
Old Time English Sequence dancing (now called Classical Sequence) is not the same as Round Dancing, but there are some similarities, as there are some similarities between most all kinds of dance. There is also Modern Sequence Dancing. One distinction between these two, is similar to one of the differences between American versus International style. Modern Sequence Dancing is done in closed position, and if you break into an open position you are doing Old Time Sequence dancing (there are some exceptions).

A large difference between round dancing and sequence dancing is that there is no cueing in sequence dancing. The dance is memorized. In round dance's beginnings, the dances were also memorized, but that is no longer done.

Note: In both sequence dancing and in round dancing, a "dance" consists of a particular song with an associated choreography. In round dance a type of dance (waltz, foxtrot, jive, etc) is called a rhythm.

I do not do sequence dancing, so my knowledge of it is not extensive, however as I understand it, a dance consists of a 16 bar pattern of steps. These steps are repeated for the duration of the song. Information about the particular dances is difficult to come by, because each of these dances is copyrighted, and it is prohibited to demonstrate, video, or copy the scripts of most of these dances without the permission of the copyright holder. That doesn't do much for promoting the popularity of this form of dance. There are many types of sequence dances, many of which would not be recognized by a ballroom dancer, such as Blues, Four Step, Gavotte, Glide, Mazurka, Party, Quadrille, Saunter, Stroll, Sway, etc. Some may recognize some of these as predecessors to some of the more modern dances. Sequence dancing also has the dances familiar to ballroom dancers, waltz, foxtrot, tango, jive, rumba, quickstep, etc.

Here is a video of sequence dancing.

Another major difference between round dance and sequence dancing is that there are competitions in sequence dancing. Competition does not exist in round dancing. Sequence dance competitions are actually pretty high level in terms of execution compared to social dancing (but you would expect that). Here is a video of a sequence dance competition.

Round dances (a choreography for a song) are typically split into an introduction, 2 or 3 middle parts , and an ending. The middle parts are usually repeated. All the steps are cued. Here is a page that has a video of a phase 2 dance which is the beginning level of round dance, and a phase 6 dance which is the highest level available in round dance.

A middle level, phase 4 may be seen here:

Here is a phase 6 rumba (highest level in round dance) demonstrated by a cuer and instructor.
Re: no subject
Posted by Serendipidy
12/27/2007  2:22:00 PM
SmoothGeezer. Thanks for the information. I know now that Round Dancing is not Sequence Dancing. Scrips are available here as well as tapes and books on English Sequence Dancing. Some of the dances are vey cleverly put together and some are useless. I had a discusion with a Sequence adict. I said you only have a certain amount of time at a dance. With forty new dances being introduced each year you must be discarding forty dances from your list. I named one what has happened to the Flo Jo Cha Cha. named after the American sprinter. That one was long gone.
In reality what is happening is that one group on this side of town have their selection of dances. It would be fairly useless to go to the otherside of town where they could be playing the Flo Jo Cha Cha. It is now becoming rather clicky.
I did put my foot in it when this guy said he knows 120 dances off the top of his head. I said speaking as a Ballroom dancer you don't do one correctly , which is true.
Re: no subject
Posted by paul&dot
12/28/2007  11:03:00 AM
SmoothGeezer & Serendipid:
I enjoyed watching the Sequence Dance Demonstration. I agree that some of the footwork is very cleverly put together. From the video the activity looks to be a recreational movement that provides an outlet for seniors, stimulates their minds, and offers a form of bodily exercise, in a casual atmosphere and with neatly clothed acquaintances.
I'm too old to call any of the dances useless.
Re: Ballroom Vs. Round Dancing
Posted by kaiara
3/13/2008  3:15:00 PM
I'm probably not as good at any one dance as many on this board, but l square and round dance and have some solid basic ballroom training.

I love all of it. Like Square, Round Dance is called or cued. That means you follow the caller in addition to your partner, rather like the combination in square dancing. But instead of the square dance steps, you get steps which are similar in footwork to ballroom steps. I find it to be fun.

Ballroom gives you greater scope for technique in your ballroom dances. There is more focus on form, and you absolutely must learn to follow and lead. It is fun when you are with a partner who is good, I find that when the man leads well, waltz is like a dream and challenging because you don't know what is coming up until you feel the lead. That communication between the partners is what makes Ballroom my favorite--but I find getting a partner for round and square is easier for us older dancers.

I also found that when I do Ballroom, it makes my Round Dancing better. And the extra hours of dancing I get in Round Dance seems to speed up my understanding in Ballroom so I can concentrate more on style.

I guess for someone with minimal experience in any one thing I've rather a lot to say! LOL Perhaps it helps?
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