Dance Teacher: the way I think it should be.

On December 25, 2013 by Decio Denis Bernardo

What does I reply when people ask me about Dance? I don’t have a standard answer.

dont-walk-dance

I mean nothing already prepared. I’ve realized I use to create a totally natural speech any time, without really think about the words. They could be different, the language maybe too, but I’m pretty sure I’ve always used these 7, plus another Big One.

Dance. Culture. Research. Knowledge. Practice. Evolution. Share.

I’m not even talking about Dancehall, my favorite style, I’m in a total more general topic: Dance.

Dance, whatever style you’re thinking, is always an expression of a particular kind of music, and music is always a particular form of Culture. Music and Dance are married since the first “sound” has been played and the most romantic of us could also say that they will never get in divorce. Dance (from now you can think “Dance and Music”) shows the feelings of people in the Countries where it grows. Nothing is defined a priori: no rules no definitions no limits. Just Dance. Then people are used to communicate their life experience and we love to define our life: Ballet, Funk, Lyrical, Jazz, Modern, Hip Hop, House, Krump, Salsa, Tango, Samba, Flamenco, Kizomba, Soca, Dancehall, etc.

Sometimes more Countries could be the parents of a particular Style, other times Styles have only one specific Country acting as mother and father – I’m thinking also to particular African or Asian dances, sometimes it’s even a small region the creator (owner sounds different) of a dance. All you need to do is: Research. Researches are books on cultural, economic, social and historical period. Researches are movies, documentaries, songs, concerts made on that dance. Researches are also people related to that Dance, to that Country or and also to that era, if possible. Researches build your Knowledge.

Knowledge help you to Dance better.

Practice your dance with Knowledge I think it’s the way to improve both your style and that dance.

Evolution is a change from an inherited consolidated environment to a new, bigger, (maybe)better level by a skilled population.

Evolution implicitly goes to Share and Share implicitly goes to Evolution.

A shared experience, given or received, is what made our thoughts, our ideas, our opinions. Share with other dancers or Share to newcomers (basically people at step three): sounds similar, sounds different.
In this second case Share is Teaching something that you know, giving the most complete message and replying to any questions (to be also able to say “I don’t know” is part of it).

However Teaching is not a mandatory step in this path. You can be also just a dancer (hard enough, isn’t it?): share your style and evolve yourself. Teachers, more than dancers, need to follow all the steps mentioned above, plus they should have knowledge (studies) in pedagogy, sociology, public relations and they have to be skilled enough to simplify everything, even the most hardest step ever.

Teachers have to be more students than their students.

Nowadays I feel like a lot of people focus on Be A Teacher, because a teacher is a kind of “certified” dancer, a guru, a master in that style of dance, they really think that:

“he/she is a great dancer because he/she is a TEACHER TOO”. So indirectly if I want to be great, I HAVE TO BE A TEACHER. False!

There are a lot of GENIUS that they’ve never taught a class in their life or maybe they’ve never joined a class neither.. Aren’t they great dancer? Recognized and everything?!

Don’t forget a teacher is only something more difficult to be in the topic you’re walking in.

I-am-not-famous-in-this-world

It doesn’t make you famous, and moreover if you’re thinking to be famous, don’t waste your time in teaching stuff. Study by yourself and increase your skills, go to auditions and try to pass them. Even there I have my opinion on who rules the scene during a performance if there are musicians or singers, dancers aren’t the main event..but this is another topic.
Anyway just a small example importance vs notoriety: who remember the name of all his/her profs at school when he/she was 6/7 ? Well, they give you BASICS of math, writing, speaking, gym.. they are essential part of your life, even if they are not so famous for you. You always remember the message/lesson they gave you.

When I discovered Dancehall for the first time, I fell in love at first sight because of its richness, but also its social side and its quality to be so simple (well, looks like.. but what if you don’t have the right attitude?!). Environment was made to share feelings: dancers showed movements, followers reproduced. Then followers played the role of dancers and dancers became followers.
Even now, years later, Dancehall is keeping its essential, also if there’re a lot of new performing steps. Messages are the same.
In their classes teachers always start from the Basics before to move to what we call now “New School”; they always “travel” from the Beginnings up to nowadays songs/steps. Thanks to these Teachers, aka Amazing Dancers, Dancehall is growing up with values.
If you want to be part of this, the only way is to study, to practice, to travel, to join class, to share, to evolve with keeping in mind that YOU’LL NEVER STOP TO BE A STUDENT.

In my opinion this is the way to protect and at the same time to evolve a style, this style. In one word:

respect

I really hope to be able to share this message to the people that I will meet when I will be in next Dance halls (my dance classes, workshops, clubs, parks, wherever).

You know how much I love to share what I love to do.

This is just my personal point of view and I’d like to ask you to comment, to discuss and to share for evolving all together.
Be positive, be open to talk.

Here I also want to share some famous quote of workshops I joined in the last couple of months.

  • LUCKY enough to had those classes,
  • CRAZY enough to avoid: resturants, cinema, alcool, cars, cigarettes (ok I’m not a smoker lol) saving money,
  • PROUD enough to have organized some of those.

 

October, 20th – Brussels (Belgium) – Sri Lanka (Rifical Team)

This is not youtube. This is reality. This is Real Dancehall.

Sri Lanka in Brussels

October, 26th/27th – Mirandola/Turin (Italy) – Crazyhype (M.O.B. Team)

I will bring you in a journey to Jamaica. Let’s create a Dancehall night party.

Crazyhype in Turin

November, 16th/17th – Bruxelles (Belgium) / Lille (France) – Blacka di Danca

When you build your house, you start from the foundations. To understand this Dance, you have always to study the Basics.

DSC08663

November, 24th – Lille (France) – Laure Courtellemont

Start from the basics, improve your style and your dance. Respect and evolve together with your dance.

Laure and me in Lille

December, 1st – Lille (France) – Lil’Gbb
(my personal quote)

This guy has a great style, he knows how to win battle, how to teach and how to share his style, he’s going high.. but he’s always so simple.

Lil'Gbb workshops

December, 5th & 8th – Bruxelles (Belgium) – Sir Ledgen, Blacka di Danca, Decio & friends

We love to share positive feelings and our dance style. This is a Dancehall Session. This is a special moment for our Memories, with positive people, good music and.. DANCE!

Dancehall Session vol. 1 Dancehal Session vol. 2

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