Savvy Raj

Live Life Lovingly!


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You lead I follow : I lead you follow… Life is a dance!

Do you love to dance?

Do you enjoy leading a dance?

What makes a dance enjoyable?

Dance is a lot like life . Here I bring forth a few simple pointers on Partner Dancing.

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Important lessons in leadership are easily learned, on the dance floor…as you lead and as you follow.

They are very simple lessons and yet very powerful and contribute in making one a better dancer immediately. But more importantly it helps to know how to be a better leader in life too.

About two decades or more, Social dancing workshops and lessons in India were rarely common. We decided to do something about it and the Dance Concepts Latin &ballroom dance workshops began . We started with the basics :a Foxtrot , a Waltz , Jive , Rock n Roll and of course a Cha Cha Cha.

The idea was to teach as naturally and as simply as possible, so that the students made quick progress in learning the concepts of dancing rather than just a routine. Having had the privilege of sharing our social dancing skills with so many eager learners over the years we made a few observations … when the learners were learning the footwork side by side they would find it a breeze. But when we instructed them to join hands and dance together in an open hold some of them felt as if they were wrestling more than dancing with the lady pulling one way, while the man was pushing her another way Each had their ideas about how they should move and how it would look.

Social Dancing is a partnership, a partnership where there is a leader and a follower. Even if you don’t like to follow, to dance well together it is wise to respect the partnership rules. Learning to follow is a skill that one needs to develop and is not necessarily easy. It’s difficult as you have to do the same thing your partner is doing, except backward.

Just as important, you have to follow his lead even if it seems as if he’s going the wrong way. And thus if one learns to lead well, the partner may actually enjoy the feeling of being led than feeling yanked and shoved around.

Traditionally the man takes the lead on the dance floor. Yes, in ballroom dancing – even in these days -mostly the man leads. But roles can be and are reversed as well. After all it takes two to tango… if one leads the other follows.

Being a leader is more about sensitivity and definitely not about pushing your partner around, but to lead well, it is necessary to develop spatial awareness so you know exactly where your partner is at every moment, which foot their weight is balanced on without looking. You have to be aware of their pacing, and be mindful of the strengths, and weaknesses. And you have to take all that into consideration every time you move with a partner in your arms.

A good leader connects than controls.

Savvy

Sense what you are going to do before you do it. Just be aware of what your next step is going to be, and give your partner the signal at the right time so they can follow you gracefully. Like so in life: Having some foresight of what your life should become is like knowing what type of dance you want to do. But being a good leader requires more of you than that. It demands that you also have good ideas about the medium- and short-term tasks that are required to achieve that vision. And it means you have to communicate those ideas to your partners – those who are working closely with you to achieve your vision.

When dancing together it is very important to …

Signal your intentions with clarity. To lead well, and the way to avoid using force is to give strong, clear signals. The clearer your signals are, the easier it is to follow you. And the easier it is for your partner to follow you, the better you will look and feel together and the better they will like dancing with you.

In life: knowing what you want from your partners, colleagues etc is not enough. You have to let them know what you want them to do by communicating it to them with clarity. And most of all you have to develop the art of patience.

Lead to demonstrate your partner’s strengths.In dancing, the purpose of the leader is to lead – but the purpose of the dance itself is to enjoy the moment with your partner, each focusing on the bringing the best of each others strengths than the weaknesses…

Wise leaders hardly blame the follower when things go haphazard , which it might at times! After all exhilaration and excitement are a stones throw away from comfort zones that one might trespass at times , yet when ever the leader and the follower work in harmony … it is magnetic and mesmerizing indeed! It is then a dance beyond all expectations!

Savvy Raj

Member of International Dance Council

UNESCO

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The Gift of Life

To dance is to acknowledge the living you at this moment
In every move, the heart and mind is looped in joyousness
In every flight is the beauty of lightness.

To dance is to realize

The sensation of living

And to energize the self

As well as the surroundings

With this gift of life!

Savvy


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Dances of India: Roots in Culture

In a land of diversities in all spheres from culture to climate, from religion to celebrations.
Every region expresses its culture distinctly according to the ethos of the people of that particular region.And as dances are a coherent expression of human nature thoughts and feelings, each form of dance that originates, encapsulates it distinctly.
Indian dances can be broadly divided into Classical Dance Forms Semi Classical and the Folk forms.
The most well known Classical Dance styles of India are the Kathak, Odissi & Manipuri of Northern and Eastern parts of India.And
Bharatanatyam Kuchipudi and Mohiniattam Kathakali from Southern parts of India.
Classical Dance and Arts is given a revered status as according to the legends, the Gods invented the dance. It incorporates music melody beats drama form and line along with gestures through hand fingers and eye movements.
The elaborate costumes and heavy makeup somehow helps convey many depictions of the overall performances.
There are a number of Folk dance forms that are performed as well.
Traditionally all these forms have been structured around the nine emotions or rasas namely:
  • Hasya: happiness
  • Shoka: sorrow
  • Krodha: anger
  • Karuna: compassion
  • Bhibatsa: disgust
  • Adbuta: wonder
  • Bhaya: fear
  • Viram: courage
  • And Shanta: serenity.
The earliest Indian religious texts have described creation in terms of a dance. And the dances of India are said to have their origins in the Vedic Age of 1000BC
Even today the practice of the Indian dances have an element of religious rituals although much may have changed with time.
Musings on Dancing

A dance is an expression of who we are, our mindset our bodies our culture all intermingled inextricably. It is a statement of our roots and our connection to others.

We can express ourselves by learning and staying rooted in the structure or choose to vary and fuse and develop our understanding by adding to the repertoire other dance forms and evolve in the sharing. The choice is ours to choose. We don’t need to discard old learning as we learn something new but align ourselves to understand the larger picture. This way we experience diversity for ourselves as we learn to see the significance of every form its contribution its essence and relevance of its roots in culture through the movements and expression. Learning dance from different lands helps us understand and evolve. We can learn to respect others traditions and cultures while valuing our own.

Savvy


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You Most Certainly Can Dance

You Most Certainly Can Dance

A short story of inspiration for beginners learning to dance!
A pleasant Sunday morning, finds me in a new venue, a family club actually for my dance workshops in the suburbs of Mumbai , well it was a start of something new, so there I stood before my new batch of learners. I notice a lovely couple  had brought their daughter of five along with them. Being a parent myself I understand the limitations of nuclear parenting in Mumbai and the fact that there are times that one has to just take the kids along where you want to go, as sometimes, there is no one you could leave them safely with.

The keen observer in the picture is the little girl  I have written about  🙂

I smiled at the little girl who gave me a warm smile back. Very sweet I thought! Soon enough I began the session with the usual round of introduction to the dance form and then went on with the basic step of swing. I was quite busy with the parents and just had a cursory glance the little girl who I saw amusing herself standing near the corner where a couple of chairs were stacked.I went about explaining about the beat, counts and the rhythm and the body positioning and was halfway through the session . I was engrossed in teaching so much that I was suddenly jolted with a soft but insistent tap on my arm. I turned and was absolutely amazed when the little girl showed me the basic step with perfect timing to music. The little girl had carefully observed what I was doing and imbibed it for sometime standing quietly in the corner and once she was confident she came up to me silently for approval.
I was clearly bowled over by the power of observation and interest in this child. Many a times with power of observation we can master all that we want to by our-self , provided we have the determination to focus on our goals.
The little child’s brain had mapped a visual imagery of the step clearly, and was able to recall it at will even though she had not practiced it half the number of times her parents had… along with me.

 The power of observation has no age barrier, some are gifted and some have to develop the latent power within, but  we all certainly have it within us to  reap the potential of this power.So do care to see a little beyond the denials and negations just trust and believe you can dance and then You Most Certainly Can Dance!

Savvy 

Author 
PS:

This was first written for my dance students and future learners, a couple of years ago .But I felt it can be shared  for the power of perseverance and belief makes all the difference ! 

 

  • We are all unique in our movements , so we must strive to find our own path to fulfillment , wherein lies our success. Success follows whenever we move with the strength of intention to learn to dance !
  • Take a step , start dancing today ! Make dancing a way of life, To find out more about learning to dance at your pace…
    please contact  here or write to me:  savvy@danceconcepts.in


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 Dancing:  Enriching life and living.

 

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The trick is in the integration of such artistic  pursuits into our everyday lives ,as most of us  carry on with our life with little or no time to spare for a little self enrichment.

www.danceconcepts.in 


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Dancing with your partner

Is a ‘Graceful walk’ together in unison,

Fully aware of your partners presence,

A synchronized togetherness

Of will and intention

With heartfelt desire to move as one.

Savvy Raj

www.danceconcepts.in

 

 


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Strike a pose

Stir swirl and swivel your passionate self. 

Just dance your heart out!

Savvy

#dancelove #heartspeaks #dancingsouls