Dance Like Nobody’s Watching ♥

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It’s the Essex Dance Club’s annual show this week and it got me reminiscing about the days when I used to dance! I really miss Tap dancing, I started when I was about 8 and 12 years later, I have a pair of tap shoes and a lust for something that was lost to me a couple of years ago, when grades became all the rage! I was never one for doing the rigid grade steps and routines and didn’t see the point in making every class exactly the same as last week.. I got bored! 

I remember my first dance class… It was an hour long and I’d wanted to tap for as long as I could remember! I wore stretchy jeans and trainers and I was so nervous. The class was held in an old church-like hall and it was sunny. I remember the other dancers, rehearsing for the show in the spring. My teacher’s name was Erin and she was lovely! She wrote down moves like, shuffles, tap springs, shuffle steps and shuffle springs and how to do them on a little piece of paper for me to take home and practise. By the end of the class I had mastered the moves she gave me AND learned a Single Time Step! I was so impressed with the whole class: the girls doing the routine to Madonna’s Don’t Tell Me, the focus I had on learning those steps and the atmosphere of the hall! I was definitely going back!

Image The Hall I learned to dance in!  Image

Sadly when I was 13 or 14 everyone in the class dropped out either because they were focussing on another form of dance or because they were going away to study. When the class came down to just two people left, me being one of them, the class was cancelled! I’ve been searching for a class that isn’t drilling people with grades (I tried it and nearly died of boredom and then nearly killed Scott, the teacher for making me dance to The Entertainer for an hour for about 7 weeks running– find the song here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7cFkae0j_Ns).

I’ve tried quite a few classes, one where I was the youngest out of a group of 60+ year olds, because the teacher didn’t have a class for my age (16 at the time) and another where we did the same basic moves over and over again. I’m not going to lie, where has the fun gone in dance? Where are the classes where people turn up for fun and learn a dance each week or a new move? Why is everyone so obsessed with making things into an exam or putting pessure on kids to do it perfectly first time? I started dancing for fun, and I’m still looking for a class that doesn’t want me to wear a pair of navy jazz pants with a burgandy top or force me to learn some half-arsed routine so I can be tested on it. I want to go in that pair of old fading black jazz pants and bright pink leg- warmers to learn a dance that makes me smile when I do it, and do it well. I danced for the passion and I danced because I enjoyed it… Somehow as a society we’ve lost the fundamentals of dance.. Because as I once heard in a film: 

 “Fundamentals are the building blocks of fun!” 

So next year at university, you can bet your bottom dollar that I’ll be joining the Tap Class, because from what I hear, it’s all about enjoying yourself and dancing like nobody’s watching… 😀

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