Instead it may help to focus on the new people, the
dancers in the room. Remind people to be inclusive and to ask
someone they don't know or a new dancer to dance. New dancers
need to do that all the time and it is a good idea to remind
the regulars about that.
i'm responding to these comments, which i especially *loved*.
i specifically try to go out of my way to dance with at least
one new dancer in an evening. the way this usually happens for
me is i'll encounter someone in line and ascertain that it's
their first (or second, or third...) time dancing. i'll smile,
and tell them they did great, and then seek them out later in
the evening and ask them to dance. they're usually dumbfounded
-- but i smile (a lot) and teach them the two main things that
matter to me about dancing, those being giving weight and
smiling (you may have noticed that there's a theme here...).
and then we'll dance, and i'll give lots and lots of positive
feedback (more smiling and positive words), and ask them to come
dancing again (and again). and if i see them at another dance,
i'll make a point of trying to dance with them again.
imho this should be a general practice among experienced
dancers. as a newbie in the early 90s, i summoned up all my
anti-shyness and boldly asked very experienced dancers to dance
with me (i'm still not sure where i got the chutzpah for that!).
as an experienced dancer now, i believe that dancing with
others like me is one of the best ways for someone to fast-track
through what can be the painful early stages of learning. and
as a lover of dance and community, i want my dance community to
thrive; and so i try to bring new dancers into the fold.
I find that the best dances are those where the new
accepted and drawn into the dance. Someone who comes
and spends the whole night sitting on the side is
going to return.
i think that asking experienced folks to do something along
these lines is essential to the survival of dance. this
describes how i came to love english country dance in philly; i
couldn't have sat out a dance if i had wanted to...
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