Ballroom Dance > Your first dance teacher

Discussion in 'Ballroom Dance' started by chomsky, Aug 31, 2011.

  1. chomsky

    chomsky Well-Known Member

    I'm so with you! and it's such a nice thing to say! I'm so happy there are others that feel alike about DF! So, I'm not the only dance-obsessed person in the world; there are others like me, which make me less weird!
  2. Rodrk352

    Rodrk352 New Member

    Life Goes On

    Okay, it has been about 8 months since I posted about the heartbreak of losing my first dance teacher who was forced out of her job. And how I had trouble adjusting to my next teacher who was not nearly as talented a dancer. I had to be patient as my new teacher learned the new bronze syllabus which in my franchise studio seems to change every year. I am happy to say that after 2 months or so I got used to my new teacher, despite her totally different personality and physique. When she forgets the steps (her own steps or mine) she asks for help from some other teacher in the studio so the problem is always solved. It took me about 3 long months to banish the "ghost" of my former instructor. I seemed to see her welcoming smile beaming at me as I walked up the long steps to the 2nd floor studio. Dance parties without her were boring. (They still are... but that's another story.) Now my lessons are as fun as they were when I was with my first teacher, and I am very happy about my dancing progress. I have 100% more confidence dancing in front of an audience. And I smile more when I dance, which was always a problem with me. So yes, you have to go through the shock and sadness of losing a first teacher but if you really love dancing there is a light at the end of the tunnel!
  3. chomsky

    chomsky Well-Known Member

    I'm so glad for you! This goes to say how we need to grow up even when we reluctantly do so. Life means change and we need to be able to welcome it instead of hanging on to the past. You never know what lies ahead. As toothlestiger said, if I've got nothing to wait for, then shoot me!
  4. novemberecho

    novemberecho Member

    I recently split from my first teacher after 3.5 years. It was more traumatic for me than getting divorced. I was definitely discouraged in the beginning, wanted to continue dancing but didn't want to rush into another dance partnership without consideration. I waited a few months and took group classes in the interim. I wish I'd known about this thread a year ago b/c I can relate to so many of the discussions (some verbatim!) Have been with my new teacher six months now and I couldn’t be happier, but what a rough road getting here. I’m quite sure I’m getting my money’s worth though – ten “life” lessons for every dance lesson. :)
  5. cornutt

    cornutt Well-Known Member

    After twelve years, we are still with our first instructor. We were extraordinarily fortunate, considering we picked the studio at random out of the phone book. We have taken a lot of lessons with other coaches and instructors, but she is our touchstone that we always come back to. ("Please explain to me what the coach meant by xxx...") I like her because she understands the way my mind works, and how things have to be explained to me.
    chomsky likes this.
  6. Mr 4 styles

    Mr 4 styles Well-Known Member

    i could have written this post verbatim!! Ill add even though i compete pro am with other teachers, my first teacher still works with me on the things im doing wrong with the others
    chomsky likes this.
  7. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    I don't work with my first teacher at all, and I don't think it would ever again be useful (though I think it would be nice to share a dance again some time before I die if curcumstances allow), but, after a rather unpleasant ending, I have been able to come to a good place with it and I think we are now going to be able to move forward in a friendly way on those very rare occasions when our paths cross...and for that, I am deeply grateful, because in spite of some fairly significant difficulties, there was alot that can also be kept as a good aspect of that time together; I know an awful lot about gardening and knitting that I never knew before, I'd probably never have discovered crocs :), I'd have never gotten to Montreal, never read Jane Eyre...never been desperate enough to drive to Indy or courageous enough to have walked into that, while I would never want to re-live that time, I can now (4 1/2 years later) allow the mistakes that we both made to slip away and be part of the past...and I think that whether a person has out grown their first pro, or simply changed in what they needed, or has kept their first pro, the key is to really understand why and be grateful for what one has learned
    latingal and GGinrhinestones like this.
  8. BreAna

    BreAna Member

    I'm realizing that it's time to get a new instructor back home, and it's definitely not easy just realizing that. My pro has been such a good friend to me, and my studio has a strong community to it. My parents have even started taking lessons there, and they freaked when I told them I think it's time for me to go elsewhere. I love everyone there, but it's about improving my dancing with someone with better credentials. Plus, I'm planning on transferring to Boston next year, so I'll be changing anyways. I hope I can still maintain my friendships with people at my studio and with my pro, but I know things will be different. I just hope there isn't a dramatic explosion.
  9. Mr 4 styles

    Mr 4 styles Well-Known Member

    Once my and my wifes dancing interests evolved beyond social dancing, studio showcases and the occasional local comp, that is when we selected our pro-am teacher/partners. My first pro who is a little older and never really did pro am comps didnt mind at all, in part because I often shared my plans with her before i instituted them. As an effect we actually did some pro am Standard at events where my other non local pro and I dance Latin and Rhythm

    Communication open, honest and caring is the key. In any relationship, but especially these

    JANATHOME Well-Known Member

    You are handling this well...

    Showing my age... but in the 20 years or so that I have dance taken dance instuction, I have changed pros/studios 3 or 4 times. There comes that point that you know as much as you like your pro, it is time to move on.

    I have never gone into a lot of the details as to why, but I have always given each pro the repsect to have the conversation in person and thank them for the time they devoted to me. Every time the conversation has been positive.

    Often at comps I run into prior pros and we usually end up having lunch or a drink together and enjoy each others company. This is a small community and it serves one well to leave a studio on good terms. There is no reason I can think of not to.....

    Good luck with your move.
    SwayWithMe and chomsky like this.
  11. BreAna

    BreAna Member

    Thank you :) I'd like to be able to see my old teachers at comps, etc. and still be friendly. It's nice to know that it doesn't always have to end in drama and flames.
    chomsky likes this.
  12. Countess

    Countess New Member

    Stayed with my first dance teacher over 6 years. Moved on and thought I would never find another that was as good. I did find another though, have learned allot since taking lessons with this teacher and believe it was a really good thing after all.
    chomsky likes this.
  13. Mr 4 styles

    Mr 4 styles Well-Known Member

    there is always light at the end of the tunnel

    especially if you carry it in your soul...
    latingal and chomsky like this.
  14. Miss Silly

    Miss Silly Well-Known Member

    I feel like i'm about to go through something similar, although my instructor isn't my first----i do have a particular attachment to him because we mesh really well in our dancing. I did my first American-style pro-am [franchise] comp with him this past year. I very badly want to compete more however as I am learning more about the competitive dance-world, it's become clear that due to opportunities and finances, it just makes a LOT more sense for me to switch to competing in International rather than franchise competitions.

    I have a great partner to form an amateur partnership with (also from the same studio, and just as competition-hungry as i am), and we've been seeing an independent International coach to get our feet wet. Now we have goals of attempting newcomer international in January (booo! no costumes! hahah) and as we were hashing out our budget for lessons and comps last night, we realize that we have to either quit going to the franchise studio all together, or maybe take our lessons as a couple every other week (i'm not ready do say goodbye to dancing bolero, mambo and west coast swing yet hahah). Either way, i don't get to dance with my pro anymore which makes me sad, but also things are a bit, uh, "sensitive" due to our desires about moving outside the franchise bubble (*gasp* LOL) to compete in international vs. franchise comps in american style.

    We have our franchise showcase on Nov 17 which could end up being the last thing we do there, and we both have no clue how to go about breaking this news to the instructors at the studio. I do have a certain emotional attachment to my pro as a dancer... but i can't do much to change the facts in regards to finances (comps and lessons) and availability of local comps. It is what it is! Im a bit stressed over it though :-/ someone slap some sense into me! LOL
    chomsky likes this.
  15. chomsky

    chomsky Well-Known Member

    Thanks for sharing Miss Silly! How badly it resonates with my circumstances too, though far from competing, just social-dancing...!!!Thanks, thanks for sharing!!!!
    Miss Silly likes this.
  16. Bailamosdance

    Bailamosdance Well-Known Member

    Welcome to the am/am world!
    Miss Silly likes this.
  17. Miss Silly

    Miss Silly Well-Known Member

    awe thanks guys. I mean, if i had unlimited money (and then unlimited time) it's possible all my woes would disappear LOL but this is not reality.

    It's my emotions that get in the way, and i suppose when you're in some sort of a partnership you do get emotionally attached a bit (although i swear not in a creepy way! LOL) but it's still like having to go through a break up when you have to end the partnership/teacher-student relationship.

    On a side note, one of the female instructors left the studio a few months ago to pursue another career and my friend taking lessons from her took it hard. He's not the easiest guy to get along with (LOL) and he felt like she was the only instructor who made sense to him. I think he's still trying to 'recover'....

    It's all a part of that bitter-sweet knowledge that you know sometimes things have to change and we can't always live in an ideal world. ("it was fun while it lasted")
  18. cornutt

    cornutt Well-Known Member

    It is what it is, as you said... there are only so many hours and dollars to go around. Perhaps what you can do is continue doing some social dancing at your old studio -- that way you can keep your American style from going totally stale (you might want to compete in it again someday), plus you still get to dance with your pro some, even if it's just social dancing. ("Just social dancing"... yeah I know and normally I'd be the first to jump on that... I'm just trying to make a suggestion.)
    Miss Silly likes this.
  19. Miss Silly

    Miss Silly Well-Known Member

    Thank you cornutt. I think this might be what we'll end up doing. It is exactly like you say---an opportunity to still get in a dance here & there with my pro and also will keep my American freestyle from getting too rusty (this is a big concern of mine). I would love to compete in it again too if the opportunity arose. I have a very serious love-affair with bolero :cool: :D
  20. Mr 4 styles

    Mr 4 styles Well-Known Member

    a woman after my own heart that is my favorite rhythm dance

    then mambo
    Miss Silly likes this.

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