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Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Last-minute partner for Dance

Recall previous posts where I was on the verge of withdrawing from solo dance at Mountain Cup. However, I had already registered, so I decided to do it anyway... BUT I did not register for solo dance at Vana Tallinn Trophy.

During Mountain Cup, I heard that Peeter, the Estonian gentleman I had skated against in solo dance at VTT last year, was the only entrant in Silver solo dance, and had asked what happened to me. I jumped to the opportunity to present my argument that there's no point for me to skate solo dance - especially not against a gentleman, when we should be partnering instead!

So, it didn't take long for the organiser to arrange for us to partner for Silver dance - just the two compulsory dances required for solo dance. Now, we are talking the Tango and Blues here... which I found are not exactly a breeze to partner!

The first practise was... uh... almost a fiasco. I would cut into his path, we would be discussing how to start (and end) the dance, *and* we ended up having a dispute over whether the 4-count edge on the end-pattern of the Tango required a swing or not! I had learned it with a swing and apparently he had never done a swing there. Of course it didn't help that he spoke little English and I spoke no Estonian. We eventually consulted the book, which said nothing as to whether a swing was required or prohibited. I agreed to do "no swing" because it simply wasn't stated in the book, and it felt much easier for me anyways.

Our second practise was much better, though I still had that problem of forgetting to push on the man's shoulder when in Waltz/Tango position. However, that got better, and by the day of competition, it actually felt good doing the dances! The Tango was better, getting us scores of 4.0 for technical and 4.2 for presentation across the board. (This was scored on the 6.0 system) Later, other skaters asked us how we managed to do it at such short notice... well, knowing the dances certainly does help!

That was quite an experience, and I enjoyed the dances very much. It has renewed the inspiration to dance, and I think I will have to find a way...

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