I have a new dancing goal. I didn't realize it until yesterday.
I have for a while had a song in mind that I would like to do a showcase dance to. I finally got the CD from Amazon last week and I played it for my instructor for the first time last night, and we walked though some choreo ideas. But more important: I explained the song and its back-story to her, and she totally gets it and gets what I want to do with it. The song, although it fits the tempo and beat requirements for the dances we'll be doing to it, is far away from typical ballroom dance music emotionally and stylistically.
This led to a "philosophy of dance" discussion, which is something we do every now and then during a lesson. But this one went into areas that we really have not discussed previously. I won't get into it in detail because some of it was rather personal, but basically we both talked about what it feels like to us to dance and to do particular dances, and with particular partners. I'm entering a new world of artistic expression here. Up to now, my approach to learning dance has been rather mechanistic, because that's my basic personality. But it's time to spread my wings a bit.
I feel like I've got my neck out a bit on this. For the first time, it will be necessary for me to really portray a character in dance. Am I up to it? I'm not sure yet. It will require a level of emotional expression in dance that I have not yet achieved. And then there's the choreo, with its all-important intersection between the emotional and the technical. My instructor and I are choreographing this ourselves because I don't know that I can explain to a coach what I want to do, and why I want to do it. But my choreo experience thus far has been limited to making tweaks to existing routines. And none of those routines was danced to music as stylistically demanding as what I'm doing now.
I'm also not sure how the showcase audience is going to react to this. The routine will (if we do it properly) challenge some audience expectations about what ballroom is, or should be. It's going to be a long routine with more than a few theatrical elements. There will be a lot of what musicians call "dynamics". There will be some quite slow and soft moments, and at least one brutally physical moment. Can we avoid boring the audience to tears? Will they be willing to suspend disbelief and watch a routine that's going to be north of six minutes long, containing several different styles?
Follow along with me as I go on this new journey for the next few months. It's going to be a rather sharp contrast to the competition discussion threads. We don't seem to talk about exhibition/performance dancing much here anyway, and this one isn't going to be the typical showcase. Should be interesting.