Wednesday, July 31, 2019

Competition


At one time, (before the Rail Disaster) there was a Dance Pavilion in the plans at the Patsy Mink Recreation Center in Waipio. That would have been the perfect place and half the size of the Palladium would have been the perfect size. Not only for dancers of all kinds of fun dancing but for competition dancers in West Oahu. But unfortunately the Big Bucks in profits from the Rail come first and it has been cancelled. The competitive dance industry could have helped but they ignored the entire shebang. They are strictly a money making industry.

"Practice like you’ve never won. Perform like you’ve never lost."


But we certainly can build our own keeping the cost down without allowing outsiders the control. Dancers who compete at these regional competitions on the mainland are usually young dance students ranging in age from about six to eighteen years old. Whereas our competition dancers are over 40 with many over 50. But you and I are still talking "good" dancers. Dance schools sometimes arrange for their classes to compete as groups. Advanced dance students often compete solo or in small groups (e.g., duo, trio, quad) in addition to competing with their dance class groups.

"Shores Of Haleiwa" by Loyal Garner


Competitive dancers must be physically fit because even short dances can be physically demanding. Also, dancers must continuously train to maintain and improve their technique, balance skills, strength and flexibility. Fortunately, we have many places on this island available to practice and hone their skills. The Palladium has been used frequently because of the large dance floor. Competitive dancing requires dedication as many months may be spent practicing dance and developing dance routines. A good dance club can help you a long way to conform to the rules.

"It is strange -- but it may be true; for truth is always strange - stranger than fiction."

Sunday, July 28, 2019

Our Dance Kuleana

By Jason Kogami, Sunset Beach
Wow, I have been looking over dance blogs, danced web sites, dance clubs, dance advisories, dance schools and I sometime wonder how we can enjoy dancing with each other. There are so many viewpoints and styles and music to choose from. I think a repertoire of six to eight dances would be sufficient for an evening of fun. But there are more than a dozen good dances out there and a couple more waiting in the wings. Most of us just want some of our favorite music and an opportunity to dance with someone. Wow, talk about gimmicks and theories. Hey You, you are suppose hold the arm up at 45 degrees and you had it at 46. Dancing is just loaded down with rules like that, many which do not apply to us the social dancers.

"Social dancers believe that poetry may be an echo, asking a shadow to dance, -
and dance may be a poem of which each movement is a word."


Then there is the usual, small, medium and large to differentiate anything. In the disciplines they have Bronze, Silver and Gold divisions which is fine. In social dancing they have beginners, intermediates and advanced which is also just fine and easily understood. But generally different goals. In the disciplines the goal is the Gold. And many attain it fast with "hard work." That is "Hard Work" The social dancers just cruise along having fun and learning of course. Gradually in their fun dancing they will feel comfortable when they are a little bit better than average. They have arrived - but they never stop learning.

"Fly Me To The Moon" by Jimmy Borges


Now that we are developing such good dancers in the West Oahu, it is only proper that some are thinking of getting into competition dancing, just for the sport. Hey, there is nothing wrong with that. Competitive dance is a popular, widespread activity world wide. in which competitors perform dances in any of several permitted dance styles before a common group of judges.  And we had a large crowd of these at one time and then they began to fizzle out when they took over the Palladium and got a little too "deluxe." The terms "Ala Wai Dancer" and "Junk Dancer" arose and applied to the "lesser" dancers, and then the decline began. The "Rootzi Tootzis" have never known why.

"The ease and appeal of blogging on this island is inspiring a new group of
writers and creators to share their voices with their fellow dancers."

Wednesday, July 24, 2019

West Oahu

Social dancers in Honolulu are not doing bad. They have their regulars and a few extras all the time. The results are a very pleasant evening of social dancing. West Oahu is really trying but most everyone knows the Rail Disaster is definitely not the answer to our problems. Some people can see it and Hawaii is already losing many people to the mainland. We can only do the best we can for the ones who stay, For sure the Waianae Coast and the North Shore will evolve and "I coulda been home in 20 minutes."

"Come Social Dancers, take me out of this dull world, for I would ride with 
you upon the wind and dance upon the mountains like a flame."


The social dancers seem to be appreciating the music much more and we are fortunate to have some terrific DJs in West Oahu. In dancing, for the older more experience dancers, the classics are very much appreciated, The distinctions between the young and the ? are becoming clearer and no hu hu. You want rock and roll, go for it, none of us want to stand in your way of having fun. But if I want the classics, may I have the rights too? Let us get along and dance our lives away, the way we want to. Trump methods gotta go.

"Music Of Hawaii" by Melveen Leed

Received from Maile Yagi

I will certainly try to be there and blog'em, I can write my viewpoint and I try to get a few more viewpoints to post in the blog and make it more "Social." I get three or four, nice but not enough. A couple more would be nice and maybe a couple "sentences." Makes it Feedback and that is our dance Blogging.

"Social dancers know that some of the world’s greatest feats were accomplished
by people not smart enough to know they were impossible."

Sunday, July 21, 2019

Beginners

I hear of them every day even if I don't see them. Social dancers that have had a very limited interest and knowledge of partner dancing. Now some people, even over fifty have shown some interest in getting into "Ballroom Dancing" somewhat more deeply. There are no age limits and everyone can decide for themselves. If you are interested in ballroom dance but don’t know where to begin, a good place to start is in a beginner dance class at your nearest dance club. Most dance clubs are in Honolulu but there are some in West Oahu. Look around and ask your friends and neighbors.


"It may be possible that social dancers dance to the beat of a different drummer"


Learning the most widely known partner dances can make you a good guest in any social gathering, and bring some fun and culture to your life at the same time. When you sign up for ballroom dance lessons, the information from your fellow students can also help you understand more about the various types of ballroom dance. When someone refers to “American or International” styles of dance for example, they may be talking about different dances. Social dancing on Oahu is amalgamated dances based mostly on the American style.

"The Hukilau Song" by Amy Hanaialii


International is well known as a exhibition and competition style of dance. And there are many excellent dancers in this discipline. An adjudicator in competition dancing is a person qualified by the Dance Societies to judge dancers in a competition. With good reason, they must apply the same principles to each competitor to be fair, an increasing requirement throughout the world. However, it does not apply to us, the social dancer/viewers.  We know what we like without anyone else's rules.

"Social dancers really believe that dance is not only a wonderful
way to express yourself but also a fantastic spare time
activity you can  enjoy with your dance partners."

Thursday, July 18, 2019

From The Music Blog.

Accents: No, not foreigners talking. In music, an accent is an emphasis placed on a particular note, as a result of its context. This can get quite complicated in the other divisions but for us, the social dancer, we just notice the recurring loud noise, that's it. It usually is on first count of the measure and determines when we make the first foot movement. Accents which do not correspond to the stressed beats of the prevailing meter are said to be syncopated. Yes, Latin accents can be a little more complicated than European. You want to get a little more complicated yet, no hu hu. do it.

"Social dancers believe that nobody cares if you can’t dance well.
Just get up, join the crowd on the dance floor and dance."


Acoustics: Acoustic music comprises music that is used solely or primarily in instruments which produce sound through entirely acoustic means, as opposed to electric or electronic means, - the old time bands. The term "acoustic music" appeared after the advent of electric instruments, such as the electric guitar, electric violin, electric organ and synthesizer. Performers of acoustic music often increase the volume of their output using electronic amplifiers. Keeping noise levels down at venues may not be just about keeping the peace with the neighbors.

How many social dancers does it take to change a light bulb?
Five!...Six!...Seven!...Eight!


Employers, event-organizers and self-employed people have responsibilities to assess and control the risk of hearing damage. However, many of these amplification devices remain separate from the amplified instrument and reproduce its natural sound accurately. Sometimes a microphone is placed in front of an acoustic instrument which is then wired up to an amplifier. For the social dancer, it merely has to do with hearing the sound comfortably. Also vaguely the qualities of the room that have to do with how clearly the sounds can be heard or transmitted. The more comfortable the music, the more comfortable the dance. And, lucky, our DJs do an excellent job of doing their thing.

"We are all inventors, each sailing out on a voyage of discovery, guided
each by a private chart, of which there is no duplicate. The world
is all gates, all opportunities, keep your eyes open."

Monday, July 15, 2019

Wahiawa with photos.

Had a good time and I think everyone else did too. I published the first blog in the Town Dance blog of Saturday with no pictures because my camera went blink. Lucky for all of us, I got these photos from Maile and we all appreciate it. Mahalo.


"Wonderful Italian Night, Wahiawa Style." Peter S.

Nice people but missing a lot of good ones that had commitments elsewhere. They will be for the next one. Made some contacts and trying to get information contributors and possible Guest Bloggers. I am getting old and a few could take over my best blog. Or if a group would like to designate their choice, I would be willing to go along and help them with the takeover. I do try to make it clear that a one club Blog may not be it.

"Oh, Sole Mio" by Mario Lanza


"Awesome Night of WBDC" ~ Rosalie
"La Vida Italiano, I love it." ~ Rod

Nice social atmosphere and good conversation. I remarked that the clock was not working and Rod took a look and asked me if I had an extra battery, He installed it in the clock and had it working nicely. This place is social. And I don't have to tell anyone that we had a hellavah good dinner. And we got some good comments too. Social?

"My Molokia Woman" by Willie K


"Having a great time at WBDC. function tonight. Come join us at our next dance."
 ~ Carol M.

As per usual, the music and the entire presentation was outstanding and every one there was enjoying the social dance atmosphere. I even saw some outsiders dancing and some just looking interested. Nice. If I get some photos I can make another blog, but I understand you may wish to post in a better venue. Your choice. The Handi Van picked me up about 9:15 and I was home before ten. Mahalo, everyone. I had me some good pizza.

"Fly Me To The Moon" by Jimmy Borges


"Social dancers believe that dance is the purest expression
 of every emotion, earthly and spiritual."

Friday, July 12, 2019

We lives and we learns.


This was written in 1997, just when Ballroom Dancing was beginning to fall apart. They had been a pretty solid group, now the divisions were becoming apparent, the term "junk dancer" evolved, there were new clubs and the entire membership was decreasing. This booklet was the first attempt to hold all the factions together but it was not very successful.

"Maui Waltz" by Loyal Garner


From the first paragraphs of the booklet
What is Ballroom Dancing?

Ballroom dancing began as partner dancing, where the man led and the woman followed. This had evolved into many different types of dances, Waltz, Rumba etc. Each one had progressed to be danced in a traditional manner and each dance had its own particular and distinctly designated style. There is also a particular and distinctly appropriate music for each style. They have been further divided into two groups. Those that are considered from the European and those that were considered derived from the Indian or Latin America. This was most noticeable in the Competition dances where there is quite an interval between the two groups' competitions and there are big costume changes.

"The truest expression of a people is in its dances and its music… Bodies never lie."
~Agnes De Mille

Tuesday, July 9, 2019

Social Dancing on Oahu

By Fred Kajima, Pupukea

I acknowledge that none of us can get through the day without making a lot of assumptions. In the world we live in, on Oahu, we just accept and go along. All of us have intellectual, ideological and moral commitments that we bring to bear upon what we think about in almost everything. But the availability of information that we can gather has sped up the rush to judgements, a practice further accelerated by the new technologies, the computer and the cellular phone.

"Social dancers believe that an occasional new dance could be included
for interest or variety, it’s a matter of balance."


And the semi-private club syndrome remains in most dance clubs. We have less patience than ever with the often painstaking task of gathering the truth. We are better informed, and yet we seem more efficient than ever in manufacturing conspiracy theories. Somebody in England said what? I am convinced that our dance cliques are quite different from reasoning altogether. Look around folks, there is more to social dancing than that.

"Sweet Someone" by Don Ho


Reasoning is an art they seem to have forgotten. Blogging seems to be the perfect answer for we must think it over carefully and own up to our opinions in a blog. Much different than the clique where no one owns up to anything and there is no responsibility for all their manufactured lies. We may be phasing into a new era for the good of all. And perhaps we will have a chance to get our two cents in again. Let's blog'em.

Another burning question: How to Porcupines make love?
Answer: Very Carefully.


Saturday, July 6, 2019

Dancing Not The Same

Social dancers are not clones, the men can lead pretty good and the ladies are just about the best in the world in following. But there are different groups like anywhere else. Just came across another branch in dance theory which is the one produced by anthropologists and sociologists in the social sciences. It is not very interesting to most social dancers. (I just wanna dance.) But learned people are coming a little closer to the original development of Social Dancing in the US. Closer related to philosophers, they explore dance ethnic features, considering aspects of dance as a medium of cultural and social interaction.

"Social dancers know that a good point to keep in mind is
to always be polite to your partner."


Features of different dance genres and styles are analyzed according to their social settings and cultures. The cultural studies trend could be classified among these dance theory lines and concentrate on how dance features relate to matters of ideology, social class, nationality, ethnicity, sexuality, gender and others. The social dancers on Oahu can understand a little better the viewpoint of the night clubbers, the exhibition and the competition dancers. So we have the choice of actively seeking clubs that are more amenable to our type of dance without getting all rootzi tootzi about it. We can respectfully leave the others to enjoy "their" kind of dance at 'their" venue.

"No Llores Por Mi Argentina" por Paloma San Basilio


One of best discoveries was that dancer’s space distribution was determined by kinship relations. The difference with what would determine space distribution in dance as a contemporary art in western culture? Yes, it is such a simple example. Dance theory, dance anthropology and so on are so extensive. I’m just providing some introductory elements. Just to point out that if we just gotta dance to that there song that is being played, we gonna dance it our way. That is the name of our game, pure and simple.

"Who says nothing is impossible? I have been doing nothing for years."
by Anonymous.

Wednesday, July 3, 2019

Waltz

American Waltz is some of the most beautiful music ever written in this world and social dancers can really move to this music. It is a basic dance because it is a Even Step dance. It is left, right, left, right, left, right and so on. It begins to become a dance as soon as you walk it according to the rhythm of the music, at whatever speed you are comfortable with. In our cultural dancing you must hear the music first and your body will just want to move to that one, two, three count. You just have to let it go, it will do very nicely by itself. Then as you walk (dance) to the music, you will notice that the one counts alternate from the left foot to the right foot to the left foot and so on. This does not have to be taught by your dance teacher and anyone can learn it by doing.

"Men social dancers know more or less what they should do,
Ask someone to dance."


"Maui Waltz" by Loyal Garner

Then you notice that you feel the music better on the one count with the accent and you acquire "styling" early, you push a little harder on the one count. Just the act of pushing down will allow you to rise on the two and three counts. In the disciplines this can become very complicated. For us, the cultural dancers, this all just comes about naturally. Once you can enjoy the music and the movement of the dance to the basic square step, you will be on your way to being a waltz dancer. If you learned it in line dancing you are way ahead of most beginners, but Partner Dancing may prove a challenge. In learning the square step basic, you must learn the lead and the follow.

"Tennessee Waltz" by Patti Page


So then you find there are more ways to enjoying the music by varying the movements. And the simplest is the walk forward and the walk backwards. Of course, for most dances you have a left turn and right turn which is easy enough to do. And the only thing required is to do it. It can be called practice, fine, but just do it and keep doing it and you will become more proficient with time. There may be six hundred documented movements in waltz. There is no record of anyone knowing all six hundred. You will find that the basic cultural Bronze of about 30 movements will be more than enough to enjoy a good Waltz with most partners. And that is the name of our game. The fancy dancers in the disciplines or Night Clubs think they are different from us, and we respectfully concur.

"The heart of blogging is linking ... linking and commenting.
Connecting and communicating - the purpose of the Internet."