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Posted by terence2
12/14/2012  8:10:00 AM
Top "flight " coaches, do not restrict themselves to any particular group ( unless, under contract ).

The major difference between the A/M and Freds syl.wise , lies in the Bronze syl.; but, essentially the same with the odd "twist " .

As to Freds or A/M competing in outside events, allow me to give you some background.

On several occasions ( 2 in particular... Phoenix and NYC ) I was the organiser of 2 NDCA recognised events, in which both had participants Prof. and Pro .Am.
In matter of fact, in one of those, an A/M teacher, danced with a F/A teacher in a Prof comp. ( that was in 1974 ) and the NYC one ( in 1964 ) had, again, both chains in attendance .

That( NYC ) was the 1st major comp. that both Larry and Betty Silvers and Joe and Nancy Jenkins competed. I shortly afterwards , coached both, before they and I moved on ( them to much greater fame), to other locales.

PS... Not all chain school owners, are open to such outside activities .
Posted by rgswoohoo
12/13/2012  4:41:00 PM
occasionally I get to dance with lady students from the local Fred's. To their own admission there are some slight differences in basic steps, but very easy to adjust to.
Posted by nloftofan1
12/14/2012  8:51:00 AM
My instructor teaches from a variety of syllabi. For example, at one time he took us through the entire Silver-level Tango syllabi of Fred Astaire, DVIDA, and USISTD (even including a few figures that have been dropped from their syllabus but that he likes). They are different from one another, but there is substantial overlap. In some cases two syllabi have patterns that differ from each other only in trivial ways, though the figures have different names. If you go to a comp you need to follow their rules, but your Fred Astaire training should allow you to prepare to dance whatever syllabus they specify.
Posted by waynelee
12/15/2012  8:41:00 AM
In response to 2rightfeet's question and comments, please realize that FADs and AM are franchise operations. As such, each studio owner is, on one hand, subject to "corporate" directions such as syllabi, competence testing of instructors, studio administrative procedures, etc. On the other hand, the owner is free to encourage the use of outside coaches, outside competitions, etc. The owner of our studio recognizes the use of outside coaches and outside competition can develop the students level of dancing, and he encourages it. Other owners I have met are loathe to even recognize that there is a world of dancing outside their studio, let alone encourage students to participate. My wife, and her pro partner, danced at the US Dance Championships in Orlando this past year. And she noted that there were many FADS students in the competition (Michael Meade was there as a judge).

Regarding Michael Meade, he is not under any contract with FADS that I know of, and currently spends most of his time as a judge at various events around the world. Since he lives in Southern California, our studio brings him in 6 or more times a year for coaching. I take full advantage of his time in the studio and schedule many sessions with Michael.

Going back to the syllabi issue, to me it is funny the differences between syllabi, with each organization having a different name for the same move and slightly different openings. For example, in FADS the first basic Rumba steps are Q-Q-S starting on the 1 beat. In AM the first Rumba steps are S-Q-Q, also starting on the 1 beat. As nloftofan1 states, "the differences are trivial".
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