Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Beginner vs. World champion match

I know very few followers who have continuously, daily training as the strategy to become better dancer. Most followers take courses every now and then and consider the dances with more advanced leaders as their main strategy.

Think of a tennis court where a world champion is playing with a beginner. Yes, his skill makes it possible to return all the balls and if he is a nice person, he can drop some of them to create a friendly atmosphere. His skill makes it also possible to place the balls so they are easy for the beginner to return.

The situation is totally different for these two. The beginner is amazed that she is able to play with the world champion and she thinks she is really good, playing with all her capacity. For the champion this is not so much about skill training, playing at the edge of his ability, but about caring, to be nice.
The biggest issue here for me is the situation when she returns to the same tennis court, but this time with another beginner. The match is totally different and it is easy to explain the difference by pointing this new playmate to 10 levels lower stage ( incorrectly). This kind of false idea of your own level creates difficulties in learning and you maybe get to the partnering stage later.

Partnering stage is (for me) when both are playing/dancing at the edge of their skill without compensation from the other, mutually exploring new things.

*This posting is a responce to a specific situation for followers but some parts could be valid for leaders too.

Sunday, January 13, 2013

QQS in milonga and tango

For me the Quick Quick Slow or a double step pattern in tango is different compared to the same pattern in milonga. Or more exactly - the process we create the QQS is the same but the time values for our steps are different. I am reasoning like this:

The bar below is a 4/4 kind of measure - as you can see there is B1,  B2,  B3 and B4. In tango we normally step on B1 and B3 and we get a calm and peacefull caminata. (One box is 1/16 so 4 of them are 4/16 = 1/4) 

Tango: Measure I

To create more action we can do a double step, a Quick step, by dividing our ordinary step to two. By using B1, B2 and B3 we get our double time-step and a feeling of change and urgency. The boxes above present also a time value so we get following numbers

Quick:  a-d = 4 boxes =>  4/16 or 1/4
Quick:   e-h = 4 boxes => 4/16 or 1/4
Slow :   i-p  = 8 boxes =>  8/16 or 1/2

Milongas musical structure can vary but here we focus on steps and what happends when we split a step to two. In the green bar you find the red boxes indicating the accents in music and the steps you take in basic milonga. When your foot hits the floor at B1, the other foot will do the same on B2. Here we need to move some faster or make the steps shorter than in tango!
 Milonga: Measure I                                                                Measure II

When we devide our ordinary step in milonga we will put down our feet on B1, C and B2. We could also write it like a, c and e. Our numbers looks like this

Quick: a-b = 2 boxes => 2/16 or 1/8
Quick: c-d = 2 boxes => 2/16 or 1/8
Slow : e-h = 4 boxes => 4/16 or 2/8

If you compared the QQS above for tango and milonga you find the difference in time, don't you!

QQS have a timely difference even between the tangos going in different speed as well as for milongas in different speed. But we can still keep the formula!