East Coast Swing was probably the most important dance on the list,
but since it had its own class, I decided to leave it off. I
trimmed the list to six - Foxtrot, Waltz, Rumba, Cha Cha, Nightclub
Starting any new class is tricky, but starting an "Intermediate
level" was a real problem because I knew there would be a wide range
of experience. To my surprise, the skill level among the men
was a lot more homogenous than I had expected.
I had two problems. Several men were used to starting Foxtrot
on the Slow and several others had been taught to start on the
Quick. So I addressed that issue and got that straightened
My second problem was teaching the leads that allowed the men to
transition from one move to another. Marla was
invaluable in telling me the areas I needed to spend more time on.
By the second hour of class, everyone seemed to be on the same foot
so to speak. We were finally in a groove.
My biggest problem with my Beginner class was talking too much.
Nothing irritates me more than to show up for a dance class and
listen to someone talk all the time. I hated being guilty of
the same thing. I probably spent too much time explaining the
differences between the six dances. However the people seem to
forgive me. Soon enough they were enthusiastically embracing
the challenge of turning the Box.
It was fun to have Sharon and Bill Shaw in my class along with their
close friends Karen and Dennis Clausen, also instructors at SSQQ.
I am fairly certain that Sharon, easily the most experienced female
teacher in studio history, could have handled the Intermediate level
in her sleep as could Karen, but husbands Dennis and Bill preferred
to start over with the Basics. I completely understood.
Men always prefer to start at Square One. All I cared about
was how fun it was to have these four friends in class. That
was a treat for me.