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Monday, April 1, 2013

A is for American Dance Category

A is for American Dance
I will be posting every day in the A-Z Challenge (except Sunday). My theme is Ballroom Dance. Today is A for American Dance.

At most Ballroom Competitions, you will find two categories of dance, American and International. The 2 categories have similar dances and figuresbut when you watch dancing with a trained eye, the differences are striking. During this month, I will point out what to look for.

There are 2 divisions in both,  smooth and Latin.  American dance in the smooth division, allows more freedom and partners can break away from the standard dance hold. 

In the US most beginning dancers first learn American style because it's easier.  Just about all social dance is American style. 
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If you have time and are interested.........
Below is a video of the American Smooth category, showing the open style where partners can leave the traditional dance hold.  Costumes differ as men wear a tux (as opposed to tails) and the ladies gowns show more of the body than in the International category.

52 comments:

  1. Yes - I think I see how there's more freedom to let go of partners in this type of dancing, I think! All very elegant! Take care
    x

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    1. Old Kitty,
      I like them both. Hate to play favorites. haha
      But International is what I always competed in.

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  2. I think I like the American Dance where you can get rid of your partner for awhile and strutt your own stuff!!

    Dance is the PERFECT catagory for you Manzi! You are a dancer after all.

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    1. Dear Terry
      And often you want to get rid of your partner and leave the room. haha... just kidding. But now that I don't dance anymore, my judging is keen. Those teeny mistakes..... I can spot em.

      Delete
  3. But I rather like the idea of holding onto the man, especially if he can dance better than me, and especially if he's hunky!!

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    1. Yes Ros, you would be more used to doing English or International Dance and that is the category I competed in for over 25 years. Hunky is frosting on the cake but being a good dancer is paramount. Haha

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  4. So graceful. I'll be learning more about dancing, that's for sure.

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    1. Bish
      This is our 3rd year. Yes, and I'll be learning more about your attractive and interesting island.

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  5. I would like to learn how to dance - but there is a coordination requirement that I fail to meet :)

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    1. Keith
      I admit that to be a competition dancer takes many hours (years) of diligent practice but you could learn basic social dancing. Betcha!

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  6. They sure have it down, I'd crash into one and it would become a game of dominoes.

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    1. John,
      That dominoes game happens a lot on the dance floor in social dancing. Even happens in competitions and that costs points. Yikes.

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  7. Well at least with american dance
    As I tried to prance
    She could stay away from me
    And that would give her glee
    As I would not cause her woes
    And step on her poor toes haha

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    1. Pat... Hahaha
      Well as far as dancing goes
      It's a crime to step on the toes
      I have a daily reminder
      That life could really be kinder
      If I didn't have this toe that is funky
      Broken 3 times by a hunky.

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  8. Ohh Manz...this is going to be fun!!! An entire A to Z on dance...so looking forward to this.

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    1. Turquoisemoon
      Really? I was afraid to do this because I thought it would be boring as dance is rather technical. Thanks for your kind words.

      Delete
  9. Oh, I'm gonna love visiting your this month.
    Karen

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  10. I'm with Karen and the other commenters, I'm going to love visiting your blog this month. I've always, ALWAYS wanted to learn how to partner dance *sigh* and thanks for adding the video. (:

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    1. Elise
      Thank you for visiting. I'm always so happy to meet others who share my interest in dance. See you again.

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  11. I LOVE watching ballroom dancing. As far as being able to dance myself...I'm probably more like your duck! ;~) Good luck with the challenge! I participated last year and had a blast!

    Donna L Martin
    www.donasdays.blogspot.com

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    1. Donna
      Thanks for the nice comment and the good wishes. This is the only blogfest I do and it is fun and I'm always learning something new. See you later.

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  12. The only "formal" dancing I've ever done was some country line dancing, back in the 90s and I was pretty good (if I do say so, myself) This looks waaaay out of my league, though.

    Great post! :)

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    1. Mark
      Thanks. There will be both information on competition and social dancing. And hey, line dancing is fun too. I love it. And if you were good at that, you too, would love social dancing. ha

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  13. Like Mark, this is out of my league but then so is ice dancing but I love to watch it them both. Wish my computer had better download speed. I just get a series of 5 seconds of video then a 10 second wait. Grrr.

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    1. Patti
      I kinda covered dance with the Flamenco but they are really totally different. Sorry you can't get the vid but most people, if they watch at all, only peep at the vids for a few seconds. Some of them are waaaaay too long. Enjoy the Baseball.

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  14. I love watching dancers. Sometimes I'll hear a great tune on the radio and wish I were a choreographer. Very inspiring.

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  15. Cindy
    You have the true markings of a dancer/choreographer. I can't ever WATCH dancing without tapping my toes or doing a little shuffle under my chair if I'm seated. Ha

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  16. Dear Manzanita,

    Ah the joys of American style ballroom dancing.
    And you dance with the joy that's in your heart and soul. The words danced from your keyboard and the video adds that extra touch.

    Strictly come dancing and with my two left feet, I wish you well with the challenge.

    In kindness and good wishes,

    Gary :)

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    1. Gary,
      I love that phrase, "Words dancing from keyboards."In my weird mind, I can see little the little words floating up from the keyboard.Thank you for stopping by.
      Love and peace

      Delete
  17. Lovely--with beautiful dresses--but nothing beats watching Flamenco!!

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    1. I know .... I really love them both. When I do Flamenco I think I like that the best and when I do ballroom, I think that is my favorite.

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  18. Will you be giving out free lessons too?

    I found you on the A to Z list. Your blog name stuck out so I came over.

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    1. Toast Man
      Thanks for stopping and the comment. My lessons were always free. I was lucky to have excellent teachers and dancing was no hardship so I wanted to share my knowledge and I still do.

      Delete
  19. In my dreams I can dance exactly like that...in reality, no. Even my gr-daughters tell me to sit down and watch them instead.

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    1. Susan
      LOL Of course, Granddaughters don't know how to ballroom. They are just jealous.

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  20. Thank you so much for clearing this up for me. I always wondered what the difference was. I love learning something new and as usual, you do not disappoint.

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    1. Murees,
      Thanks for visiting and commenting. I wish I had your gift of humor.

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  21. Great post Manzi! I love reading your A to Z.

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    1. Paige
      Thank you for the nice comment.

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  22. I like how there is more freedom in the American style. I suppose the style was considered risque when it was first developing. Such full circle when you come to think of it. I've often thought of dance in the beginning as being no hand holding.

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    1. Susie
      In the beginning they couldn't touch at all

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  23. I kept expecting to see people crash into each other, but they were pretty good about not banging into one another. I am looking forward to the International Competition now to see the difference.

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    1. Robin
      Oh you will ... and a few dances in-between. Have to find 36 you know. LOL

      Delete
  24. Well, this is a fascinating choice of theme. A chance to learn about dancing, without treading on other Bears' paws.

    Did you know that dancing has been found to be the most effective thing to do in order to ward of the blight of Alzheimer Disease? I saw something about that within the last month or so.

    Blessings and Bear hugs!
    Bears Noting

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    1. Bear
      Well then let's keep dancing morning and evening. Hummm, I wonder why?
      Glad to see you are out of hibernation.

      Delete
  25. I am going to have to learn how to dance after this Challenge is over! Nice subject!

    Chuck at Apocalypse Now

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    1. Chuck
      I bet you know how. But if you really don't.... this may give you the bug. (as in jitter bug...da da da da.

      Delete
  26. My in-laws knew how to do ballroom dancing, but dancing is something I never learned. Now I wish I had, but the slippery shoes worry me, what if I can't stop sliding and break a leg? Ouch. I always wear shoes with good grip and tread deep enough to collect small gravel.

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  27. Hi Manzanita .. I'd love to be able to dance - but sadly have no sense of rhythm - well certainly not for dancing .. but I do enjoy watching.

    Cheers - Hilary

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  28. I have two left feet, so it was lovely to watch the pros!

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  29. What a great way to share some dance information with those outside the dance community! Makes me remember why I love it so. This is exactly the type of competition that I was involved in as a teen and young adult. :)

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