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Author Topic: Group lessons only?  (Read 770 times)
phoenix13
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« on: May 18, 2013, 10:31:40 AM »

I know quite a few people who take only group dance lessons, usually because of the relatively high cost of private instruction.  Obviously, there's not a whole lot you can do about your budget.  But are there ways to get the most out of group lessons?  And is it possible to become a good (or even great) dancer without a lot of private lessons?

What can a dancer on a budget do?
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elisedance
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« Reply #1 on: May 18, 2013, 02:13:49 PM »

..But are there ways to get the most out of group lessons?  And is it possible to become a good (or even great) dancer without a lot of private lessons?
...

A great dancer?  Of course - there are great dancers all over the world who are self taught.  The problem is becoming a great dancer in a form where its been stylized and developed in a certain direction - whether its ballet or ballroom you have to have training in that form and direction.  I think that is not possible without private lessons - but I'd love to have SG's opinion on that... 
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phoenix13
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« Reply #2 on: May 18, 2013, 05:13:44 PM »

As would I.

I've never come across any advanced dancers who argued that private lessons could be completely avoided.  I have come across more than a few who think they should be scheduled sparingly, though.  There are some big proponents of lots and lots of practice, in lieu of more contact hours with a pro.
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elisedance
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« Reply #3 on: May 18, 2013, 06:27:00 PM »

Well... I don't agree.  The longer time between lessons, the more errors you are going to 'burn in'.  For me the ideal is at least one lesson a week, better 2.
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millitiz
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« Reply #4 on: May 18, 2013, 11:28:45 PM »

Well... I don't agree.  The longer time between lessons, the more errors you are going to 'burn in'.  For me the ideal is at least one lesson a week, better 2.

Although I think that there is a minimum amount of time for materials to sink in (with practices). I guess it really depends on many variables.
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millitiz
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« Reply #5 on: May 18, 2013, 11:30:35 PM »

As for the OP - yes, it is possible to be good/great with little privates. I think in Europe, that is how they do it - although I think you need a large concentration of dancers to make it fly.
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phoenix13
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« Reply #6 on: May 19, 2013, 09:19:59 AM »

One gentleman I know who is big on minimizing the number of private lessons lives near a college team, IIRC.
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elisedance
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« Reply #7 on: June 01, 2013, 10:40:17 PM »

As for the OP - yes, it is possible to be good/great with little privates. I think in Europe, that is how they do it - although I think you need a large concentration of dancers to make it fly.
I'm sceptical... do you know of any examples?  And I wonder how groupy the group lessons really are.  Maybe 2 is a 'group' Roll Eyes
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millitiz
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« Reply #8 on: June 02, 2013, 01:36:52 AM »

As for the OP - yes, it is possible to be good/great with little privates. I think in Europe, that is how they do it - although I think you need a large concentration of dancers to make it fly.
I'm sceptical... do you know of any examples?  And I wonder how groupy the group lessons really are.  Maybe 2 is a 'group' Roll Eyes

Admittedly, these are hearsay, and a few indirect evidences. I know that in Taiwan, there are quite a few "group lessons" specifically for competitors. There are a few types of them, one of them is like a whole package - it teaches you how to wear makeup, dress, techniques, dancing etc. There are also this group lessons where the coaches would just throw you routines and you have to learn it within maybe an hour and be able to do them. There are also mock- comp kinda group lessons where people just keep dancing.
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elisedance
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« Reply #9 on: June 02, 2013, 08:26:44 AM »

As for the OP - yes, it is possible to be good/great with little privates. I think in Europe, that is how they do it - although I think you need a large concentration of dancers to make it fly.
I'm sceptical... do you know of any examples?  And I wonder how groupy the group lessons really are.  Maybe 2 is a 'group' Roll Eyes

Admittedly, these are hearsay, and a few indirect evidences. I know that in Taiwan, there are quite a few "group lessons" specifically for competitors. There are a few types of them, one of them is like a whole package - it teaches you how to wear makeup, dress, techniques, dancing etc. There are also this group lessons where the coaches would just throw you routines and you have to learn it within maybe an hour and be able to do them. There are also mock- comp kinda group lessons where people just keep dancing.
I think group lessons are generally good for learning steps and routines - but awful for learning how to dance them.  I mean I now (private lessons) spend a few minutes learning a step and then months learning how to dance it!
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If you must leave the house, go build a home...

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millitiz
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« Reply #10 on: June 02, 2013, 09:35:47 AM »

Maybe we use/define words differently? Because to me, learning a step means to learn everything behind it.
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elisedance
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« Reply #11 on: June 02, 2013, 10:50:13 AM »

Maybe we use/define words differently? Because to me, learning a step means to learn everything behind it.
Ah, yes.  I see.  I've always separated the two because so many people learn the foot work but go no further - typical of social dancing.  A social dancer does not want to spend 3 months improving (can't even say perfecting) a natural turn.  Or maybe I should say 10 years Tongue
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If you must leave the house, go build a home...

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phoenix13
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« Reply #12 on: June 02, 2013, 11:13:27 AM »

It's off topic,  I know, but I think it's incomplete to say that social dancers don't want to learn what's behind the patterns.  There are serious dancers out there who have no desire to compete. Those dancers are usually labeled social dancers,just because we don't know what else to call them. But they do want to know how to dance, not just do steps.

BOT I think that group lessons for very basic patterns can be a great place for more advanced students to practice technique.
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elisedance
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« Reply #13 on: June 02, 2013, 04:53:47 PM »

It's off topic,  I know, but I think it's incomplete to say that social dancers don't want to learn what's behind the patterns.  There are serious dancers out there who have no desire to compete. Those dancers are usually labeled social dancers,just because we don't know what else to call them. But they do want to know how to dance, not just do steps.

BOT I think that group lessons for very basic patterns can be a great place for more advanced students to practice technique.
Yes, its a rude generalization - but its very common - while virtually non-existent amongst the competition set.  You can't compete higher than 'newcomer' without some technique that goes beyond steps.
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If you must leave the house, go build a home...

The limit of your love is also the limit of your art...
phoenix13
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« Reply #14 on: June 02, 2013, 05:31:59 PM »

It's complicated by the fact that it can be difficult to find an instructor who supports that approach.  Ts reminds me of the discussion we had in the "why do people expect you to compete' thread.  It seems that there are generally two choices -- a "social" studio,where technique may notbe the focus, or a competitive studio, where you are *encouraged* to compete.  There usually  is no middle ground. *shrug*
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