ThreeWiseMen, Is there enough money in judging ballroom competitions that someone could choose to be ONLY a judge? Is there enough money in judging ballrooms competitions that enough people would choose that option so that there is a big enough pool of judges to attend competitions? Or would it mean that entry costs increase for competitors and spectators in order to support that kind of system? If making people choose to coach or judge doesn't cost competitors more money, maybe there is a possibility for that - but, at present, I've gotta say, I'm not yet convinced.
Clary. A direct question. Do you beleive that the judging system as it is today is fair. Does the system make it easy for a crooked judge to be dishonest. I would expect you to know that only a few throught the world hold an Internation Licence to judge. My former teacher does and in a Professional World Champioship held in Austria last year she was invited to judge, which meant travelling some 12,000 miles each way. Expences paid and well looked after. Not one of the competitors had ever had a lesson from her. You are aware that in most ordinary competitions. The travell for the judges plus other expences are out of their own pocket. So ask yourself. Why would they bother to go. The answer is fairly obvious isn`t it I say again . No judge should be allowed to judge his or her own pupils. One more thing. How does a judge live with themselves after not marking a couple who should be assured of a place. Easy. They dont even look at them. Its as if they are not on the floor at all. as the couple pass, they the judges looks the other way. They literally do not see how well this couple may be dancing compared to the others.
Three Wise Men, Whoops, my last posting got away from me - sorry about that. You had mentioned that, in your experience, judges pay their own travel and lodging expenses. I've run across competitions where the organizers DO pay for judges/scrutineers travel/lodging (and put up with some grumbling if the judges are asked to share rooms). As to your question: Is judging always fair? Of course not - and I beleive that I wrote in an earlier post that "life isn't fair." But I don't think that ALL judges are ALWAYS unfair just because they judge their own pupils. What do you make of this: If a judge has taught ALL six finalists, one of them has to be first and one has to be last, and some have to be in the middle. In that instance then, you might be happy to think that they are all squabbling among themselves as to favoritism and so in the end they get what they deserve. But in my life, ballroom judging and its imperfections just isn't going to keep me awake at night with worry.
Clary. In all these years I have never met one person who is willing to say that as it is at present and in the past the system of our judging is fair. Are you going to be the first to say Yes I beleive it is fair. It doesn`t stop with just the judges. Wally Fryer former top dancer told me that he and Vi used to stand at opposite ends of the floor when judging a comp where they were the sole judges. That was untill one day after judging the first round of a comp .As the recalls were being called Wally is saying to himself. How could Vi have possibly marked some of these couples. Vi Barnes at the other end of the floor was asking the same questions about Wally. When they got their heads together there were people on the floor who neither of them had marked.
I have a paper written by Harry Smith- Hampsire Reprinted from the Dance News Vol 1750. The present System of allowing the Membership qualification of a recognised Teaching Association to be accepted as that is all that is necessessary for judging a competition.This was first acepted several decades ago only as a temporary measure. ( Thats intersting ) Over the years i have found that many competition coaches and judges may only have an imprecise concept of what the Technique of Ballroom Dancing really embraces.
ONLY a FEW hold a Licence ?? and what would that licence be ??..Where do you get this info from??
The current requirements for adjudicating are well established ,and if you are refering to Championship events, then a Fellowship in the div. one is to judge, is ALL that is needed, and there are THOUSANDS of qualified people world wide that hold that qualif... normally past Champions ( and past ranked dancers ), at the world class events,are chosen , but not necessarly so...
A Members is acceptable for many other style comps (Local, state etc).. and even in some cases, the Assoc. level..
Terence. I`m sure you would be able to get from the Dance News a copy of Harry Smith- Hampshire`s letter to the board of control. You can then read for yourslf what he thought of the system as it was at the time the letter was written Is it still so that a person some decades ago passed their examinations allowing them to become a teacher within this or that Society.Which then allows them to be called an adjudicator without any further examination and without being examined periodically to see if the current trends, which do change are understood. Just ask. How is NFR ( no foot rise ) applied. And what happens if it not applied correctly.
Terence. My knowledge on this subject at the moment is very scant. Not for long though. Surely the very fact that as you have written,,,, normally past champions and past ranked champions are chosen from thousands of qualified people.... Doesn`t that become a qualification in its own right. Just asking, not judging.
Terence. I can only quote from our rules of Dancsport Page 62. A coach should continue to develope his/her skills by attending seminars and workshops and keeping himself/herself informed on developments in technique, style and sound coaching principles. What is wrong with that rule ?. What is wrong is using the word Should. It should read Must. Who doesn`t agree with that ?.
Now to Page 57. A DSA coach`s licence shall only be granted to a person who holds a current valid coaches accreditation issued by the Accreditation Commission.
I am assuming that an ajudicator must have a coaches licence.
I`m just digging up a few facts which aren`t always adhered to.
yes, simple solution. There are a lot of judges out there. It is simply a matter of the comp organizers being willing to do what it takes to bring them in.
Most European judges haven't even seen most American competitors. They should be willing to travel back and forth over the pond. The organizers should be willing to pay for them with some of the money they make from the obscene amount they charge for entry into comps. Don't tell me they won't do it. My job takes me to Europe several times a year so I know it isn't an impossibility.
As far as personal taste and biases for certain couples and their styles...that will factor in because dance is an artform as much as it is anything else. When pros are competing most are so technically identical it is simply interpretation that defines them. There is always that one couple that is ridiculously better than the others but that doesn't happen all that often. You wouldn't get mad at an art critic because he like Chagall better than Modigliani. You have to know that is part of judging an art.
Belleofyourball, Hmm. Maybe for really big competitions the cost could be absorbed and so maybe it could have a chance to work. But it has the potential to wipe smaller, less expensive competitions off of the calendar.
By sitting back and saying nothing has led us to this ridiculace position where an Amateur can teach without being qualified. Dont anybody try to tell me that the top Amateurs in the world do not teach. Soon why will anybody want to declare themselves a Professional unless one wanted to compete as a Pro. Two years ago here a major IDSF Amateur Comp was held. Some of the top competitors taking part openly advertised that they would be available for lessons. The rules in their counties allowed this. Where will it end. I like the way it is in Germany where the clubs own the competitions. Within the clubs they do not cater for Social Dancers. The teachers outside the clubs can teach Socialy but never teach a competition dancer. Because to be a competitor one must be a member of a club. If none of this is correct please say so because this was how it was told to me. It would appear to be a good system