Thursday, June 30, 2016

Good Dancing

By Franklin Wong, Kahala
A good dancer is a definite plus to social occasions - especially the men. If a man, as the lead, takes the time to become skilled and confident, but not overly forceful, every lady in the room will appreciate his presence. A good dancer does not need to be handsome to be popular. Similarly, a lady who is a good dancer radiates grace and charm, regardless of whether she is a physical beauty.

"Dance blogs are enabling dozens of dancers to express their opinions
with reduced political risk simply because of the sheer number of
like-minded opinions online. Facing these independent voices,
the old clique machine starts to crumble."

Good dancing and good dancers can heighten the atmosphere of an event. The whole affair goes more smoothly when there is competent dancing. In business and professional life, a person can lead to their acceptance and belonging by the ability to dance. On many social occasions it is almost essential to be able to dance well. And I am referring to social partner dancing using the old KISS method. "Keep it simple, stupid."

"Young At Heart" by Jimmy Borges

As we become ballroom dancers we make many new friends and we find that other ballroom dancers are wonderful people. Social Ballroom dancing will add a new and very beneficial dimension to your life. It is a lifetime social skill that will provide much joy during your entire life. Now can we also dance in a Night Club? We can dance with each other very nicely.

"Never put off until tomorrow what you can avoid altogether."   

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Getting More Interesting

I am learning more every day. I am getting the regular flyer kind of advertising and some with Capital Letters and all that. It goes to everyone that may even be remotely interested. I get these all the time from hundreds of places. And straight advertising is alright in its place but in our blogs I usually want it as communication to our fellow dancers.

What about the flyer that says, "If I wanted your opinion
I would have sent you a form." 

The neighbor islands are doing the same thing. Web style, flyer kine, so I have to translate these high level "pronunciamientos" into friendly blogger like social media. It then becomes communication to our reader/dancers, and we gotta have that.

You Are Here   X

If you are not here, please ignore this notice.

Calvin and Hobbes doing the Kalihi Shag.

In fact there are several blogs that I am in contact with, mostly on the mainland, that definitely prohibit Capital Letters. Some have two day penalties in which you cannot post to the blog. You will notice our blogs have the absolute minimum of Capital Letters. We are long way to perfection but we are going in the right direction.

 "Blind Man In The Bleachers" by Loyal Garner

LAGS: The Latest And Greatest Syndrome. This is a normal occupational hazard of the beginning instructor. The teaching of some of his favorite variations and Mickey Mouse (unleadable) dance patterns to beginners. The intention is to give the student the impression of the g-r-e-a-t teacher the student is so fortunate to get. It soon wears off and they get serious about getting the student to learn the basics first. And we have got some of the best dance instructors in the world, right here on Oahu.

"There is nothing certain, except the unforeseen."

Wednesday, June 22, 2016

Holding On

Most dance organizations on Oahu have Web sites and find that any cooperation with a blog is superfluous. Makes it difficult to get information contributors. They think in term of "instead of" where as blogging is an "addition to." If you have a  counter the hits should tell you something. Yes, I know about the search engines hits, a necessary evil. And I also know about the scam, spam robot hits and those are just a pain in the ass.

"The more popular people think they are in our dance scene the
thinner their skin and the thicker their hypocrisy. This
should be exactly the opposite: the higher you go the
thicker the skin and thinner the hypocrisy."

There does not seem to be any electronic dance community for the young on Oahu. They could have street dances in the form of clubs and rave dances that would mainly revolved around a consistent rhythm and flow. Hip-hop dance styles like popping, tutting, roboting and liquiding, due to their futuristic-psychedelic theme and/or movements, have been widely adapted elsewhere. But our disciplines are strict and some are more strict than others. Fortunately for the Social Cultural dancer, change is a natural acceptance.

"I Will Remember You" by Don Ho

Fortunately, on Oahu, the gradual acceptance of all dances is becoming normal. This, "I am better than those junk dancers," is obsolete now. If you are good, fine, congratulations, you probably deserve all the accolades. We shall all applaud with gusto at the right moment. Just don't come around lording it over us lesser class fun dancers.

"It is just as easy to give good advise to ourselves as to others -
- and just as useless."

Saturday, June 18, 2016

The Change

We must accept the changes made by the reader/dancers. The Town Dancer blog that had been in the front from the very beginning is now in second place behind Platinum Horseshoe which is mainly in West Oahu. Wahiawa Balllroom Damce Club and Kapolei Chapter HBDA are the leading clubs with a good influence on the hits. One more club and it will go into the stratosphere and I can start looking for Guest Authors.

Attention All Readers: All of these blogs have been hijacked and the language for the blogging has changed. I am trying to change back
to English but Blogger doesn't seem to have a clue.

So the action seems to be developing in the West in spite of the Rail Disaster. That means all the way up to Makaha (the left side of the horseshoe) and down to Kapolei and then up through the Central Valley to the North Shore. (the right side of the horseshoe) Community Centers on the entire Island of Oahu would be perfect. But the Community Centers seem to have a  prejudice against "dance halls" so that dancers must go elsewhere. Many Community Centers would be perfect but they run it to suit themselves not the community.

"Tiny Bubbles" by Don Ho

Astounding that there seems to be a natural exchange and acceptance of dance movements from the Commercial Dance Night Club scene and the Social Dance Club scene and vice versa. This amalgamation represents 80 -90% of the existing social dancers on this Island. The fusion should be pretty well complete by the end of this decade. They seem to have accepted the natural trend and it seems to be good for both.

"Maui Waltz" by Loyal Garner

The kids have had little influence in our Cultural Dance World. They have their own ever changing world. And whenever they develop something pretty solid, their teachers get in with LAGS and it then proceeds to die a slow death. Don't be hard on them they are having fun and they will learn. Salsa is in that state now. If Mambo had 600 documented steps and patterns in its heyday, Salsa has 800 now. We should now know what that means.

Attention All Readers: All of these blogs had been hijacked and the
language for the blogging has changed. Blogger was no help
but I finally found it.

Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Social Dancing

By Rodney Yamaguchi, Moanalua

I have been social dancing for almost ten years and enjoy it very much. Though I would like to compete I find the costs associated with taking lessons and competing to be prohibitively expensive. In addition to the cost, I have been concerned about efforts to showcase ballroom dancing as a "sport" so that it can compete with the likes of ice skating and ice dancing. Maybe it is my imagination but it seems as though the dance and costumes in the newer shows are getting glitzier and sexier, rivaling Las Vegas shows.

"It may be better to attempt to do something great and fail,
than to attempt to do nothing and succeed."

I know that ice skating is a very popular TV spectator sport, especially among women as TV football is for men. But is there any evidence that the television popularity of either of those sports does anything to motivate the average viewer to either ice skate or play football? I personally doubt it. The professional football players and ice skaters are such "pros" and such superb physical specimens that we just sit and watch in awe, never imagining we could make decent efforts at these activities ourselves.  
"Time After Time" by Placido Domingo

If dance lessons continue to cost upwards of $100 per hour and the only exposure the public has to ballroom dancing are these young, sexy professionals with bodies-to-die-for, there will be little likelihood of ballroom dancing ever becoming the mainstream social dancing it once was. I wasn’t around in the "old days" when there were ballrooms everywhere and everybody somehow learned to dance but it is something I sure would like to see again. Perhaps the rightful recognition of the Social Dancer is the answer.

“We may need coffee to help us change the things we can change ...
and wine to help us accept the things we cannot!”

Friday, June 10, 2016

The Descent

At last after all these years it is about to happen. Another blog will surpass Town Dancer in Average hits per day. That blog is Platinum Horseshoe and the information contributors are what did it. Nary a single Guest Author in Platinum Horseshoe, yet. When that happens, Wow! We should all be grateful to Aunty Maile of Wahiawa Ballroom Dance Club and Willy Dionisio of Kapolei Chapter HBDA. Their help has done it for "all" the dancers on this island just in sharing information and a few photos.

“We don’t want to believe things because they make our life better,
we want to believe them because they’re true.”

And we are getting reader/dancers on the neighbor islands too. So anyone who appears in our dance blogs is bound to make it Social Media for all the dancers in Hawaii. I am closing all comments section on our blogs. The readers have definitely made the decision. Nobody comments. Ha! And I am expecting an email from the Philippines because of the blog on WBDC Filipino Fiesta. I get a few from the Pacific Basin with nice comments about our dancers.

The adjustments are still going on. The counters (reader/dancers) still make the rules. I pushed the envelope when we went to ten blogs and over diluted the readership. I then deleted three blogs that were in single digit average per day hits. The total hits for the entire blog sphere went up. The reader/dancers had made the correct decision. At the moment, we are at what is referred to as the point of diminishing returns. The one thing that will make the difference is the information contributors who may later decide to become Guest Authors. We will then have dance Social Media.

"Of course, you could always try to do it again, the way your
teacher told you to do it the first time." 

Monday, June 6, 2016

It is a struggle

Ralph Waldo Emerson: Whatever you do, you need courage. Whatever course you decide upon, there is always someone to tell you that you are wrong. There are always difficulties arising that tempt you to believe your critics are right. To map out a course of action and follow it to the end requires some of the same courage that a soldier needs. Peace has its victories, but it takes brave men and women to win them.

"Fly Me To The Moon" by Jimmy Borges

Our blog sphere has hit the wall. The one thing that will move them up is the reader/dancers that are willing to share some of their dance information and perhaps a photo or two. That will move them definitely out of the present territory. We do not need much information or a thousand photos, that is for OP (other people.) Then there is the growing Latin dancing with Bachata, Salsa and Tango leading in the Night Club action.

"Y Volvere" by Vicki Carr

We do not get much news from the Island of Oahu, but we are making contact with the neighbor islands and with California. Oahu may eventually get the idea. They have advertising in newspapers, magazines, radio, TV and Web sites. We are not an "instead of," we are an 'addition to." Patience is needed but at my age I am personally running out of time.

"Some people manage by the book, even though they don't
know who wrote the book, or even what book." 

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Dance Discipline

This is a “Discipline.”

Ballet technique is arbitrary and very difficult. It never becomes easy - it becomes possible. The effort involved in making a dancer’s body is so long and relentless, in many instances painful, the effort to maintain the technique so grueling that unless a certain satisfaction is derived from the disciplining and the punishing, the pace could not be maintained.
Agnes de Mille

"It's A Wonderful World" by Louis Armstrong

The most essential thing in dance discipline is devotion, the steadfast and willing devotion to the labor that makes the classwork not a gymnastic hour and a half, or at the lowest level, a daily drudgery, but a devotion that allows the classroom discipline to become moments of dancing too.
Merce Cunningham

It is a tough game and the rules have been made by imperfect humans. Further more they are played by imperfect humans. Sounds familiar?

"Stranger In Paradise" by Tony Bennett

Modern Dance:

The  perfect reason for the existence of Modern Dance. Why go through that agony when you can enjoy the movement to music in other ways that are more pleasant. In the early 1900s European and American dancers started to rebel against the rigid constraints of Classical Ballet. Shedding the authoritarian controls surrounding classical ballet technique, costume, and shoes, these early modern dance pioneers focused on creative self-expression rather than on technical virtuosity.

Modern dance is a more relaxed, free style of dance in which choreographers use emotions and moods to design their own steps, in contrast to ballet's structured code of steps. It has a deliberate use of gravity, whereas ballet is rigid in its technique. Because of the common history, the two forms (classical ballet and modern) share a similar terminology and structure. Modern dance is a term that applies to a variety of different disciplines, all with subtly different techniques, that responded to the imperialism of ballet through varying, culturally specific catalytic factors.

"Those that are ignorant of history are condemned to repeat it."

We are now going through the same revolution to get back our original ballroom dancing, the one done for fun. It will be hard with the increasing spectator group but it will come. Even the accepted terminology has yet to come. Social dancing, cultural, universal or common dancing but we need more people that are aware of what is going on to label it once and for all, at least for this century.

 "Fly Me To The Moon" by Jimmy Borges

If we can do it on Oahu, we shall regain all the dancers that we have lost in the last 20 years and perhaps even gain a few more than that. It already seems to be getting that way in the West, all we need is a few places to dance. then we will have it made in the shade.

An old revolutionary saying: "You have nothing to lose but your chains."

"Never put off until tomorrow what you can avoid altogether."