I’d love it if all my dance students take a look at this before taking any classes with me.
This is my framework for dance education…
Everything else you learn will take roots more easily if you’re familiar with this map.
Download the PDF here, or read the less pretty version below. =)
Connect To Self
1. Be (Body Awareness)
Can you stand still – truly, deeply still?
Are you comfortable, balanced, relaxed?
Could you hold this posture for a while?
Can you hold a constant, higher tension?
Is your body’s energy evenly distributed?
Do you start every dance this way?
Did you remember to breathe?
Are you present here, now, in this room?
Does the music resonate, but inside you?
2. Flow (Body Control)
Do you know when you’re ready to move?
Can you tense or relax your body at will?
Or increase energy to a given body part?
Can you adjust % of weight on each foot?
Do you know your basic muscle anatomy?
And does each respond quickly, if asked?
Movement is joyless without flow, right?
In sports, do your fake-out moves rock?
Do you prep movement, even if quick?
Can you take a beautiful forward step?
So beautiful tango teachers get teary eyed?
Can you control where your foot lands?
Is your moving balance exquisite?
Are you loving the ground as you walk?
Would a light push get you off-balance?
Can you isolate your ribs, hips, shoulders?
And do so with a sharp start and stop?
And without any noise before and after?
Do you love music, almost worship it?
Do your flow and movement show that?
Do you feel giddy, like a child at play?
Do your self-negative thoughts have you?
Or can you smile at them and keep going?
Can you imagine a million ways to move?
Do you ever lose your self in movement?
Leading, is inspiration leading thru you?
Following, does the divine feminine glow?
Connect To Other
Do you believe quality touch is the key?
Really key, more than any of your moves?
Can you connect your soul to your skin?
Can touch be sacred, shared meditation?
How much touch do you enjoy in life?
Friends too, not just your life partner?
How much do others enjoy your touch?
Your hands are sensitive; can you feel that?
Does your body also offer quality touch?
Do people rave about your comfy hugs?
Can you reach out and make contact…
…without losing your own spine/balance? Can you create/handle various embraces?
Are those embrace adjustments yummy?
Are you still stuck on the word “frame”?
Do you get leaders’ and followers’ circles?
Can you connect by flapping your wings?
Do you appreciate both self and partner?
Leaders: Can you project your intention?
Do you have strength and clarity to boot?
If your partner fell, would you catch her?
Are you okay being in charge, directing?
Followers: Can you surrender fully?
Can you trust a leader with your balance?
How do you test, before you trust fully?
Can you make difficult appear effortless?
Do you relax when taken care of?
Isn’t this the Holy Grail of partner dance?
Do you practice a 51-49 partnership?
Can you, at times, slip into 50-50 mode?
Is your collaboration… well, collaborative?
Is the whole greater than the sum of parts?
Is your creative musicality shared or solo?
Do you both listen and respond well?
Can you access ‘weegie board’ movement?
Have you had your first ‘Zen dance’ yet?