Blog Archives

Is dance just a hobby?

Yes – it can be, it can also be the start of a lifelong love affair or a career in itself.

It also doesn’t need to be decided at the first class. We are just relaunching here at React Dance (October 2016) and so welcome everyone who is interested to come and try our classes. We will be expanding – we have great plans afoot. But we also will always realise that sometime – your child just wants to come along once a week to have some fun, see their friends, dance about and then head home.

Mondays at present are our Dance Clubs – no strict syllabus, no exams, no pressure – yes we will do a termly showcase, but everyone who wants to dance for a class a week is welcome. We will soon be launching our core subject classes (January 2017) with options to do exams with the IDTA, workshops to develop skills, opportunities for additional performances and solos.

But having a fun hobby that is there without too much pressure is important too!

So if you are looking for a welcoming, growing dance school – come along for a trial class, bring a friend – you are all more than welcome. Leanne@reactdance.co.uk

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Improvisation

Improvisation is key to being a good dancer. It comes from being able to listen to music, and interpret the emotions and story through movement.

It is also done with very little preparation – there are no hours of choreography to do, no weeks of research – it’s about reaction and feeling.

You will know – sometimes a song comes on and you get a certain urge to move. This is especially true for dancers – though it is not simply a wiggle or step and tap. You hear accents that require leaps, or crescendos that require expansive moves.

Your body reacts to show whether the song portrays hurt or joy.

Talking through what a song makes you feel – is a great way to introduce even the littlest ones to improvisation. Does it make them happy? Do they think they should run or jump? Should they float like a fairy? Does it sound angry and stampy?

This is just one way dance is amazing for a child’s development – especially their emotional well being. Being able to understand and recognise feelings that come from events and sounds.

Pick some of your favourite songs and ask them what they think. Things like the music from “Frozen” or “Aladdin” by Disney are great as they are designed to evoke feelings.

Botofogo and Triples

Say what?!?!?

But before we panic – just think about what we learned on Monday and you will be fine!

Botofogo (or Boto- fogo)

This is a dance step in Samba but is used in various other styles too.

It is a step taken across the body, for example on the right foot, with a flat foot. Then followed by a “ball change” movement onto the left foot using a side step with a little weight transfer. Then step back onto the right foot – flat footed.

Triplet

It is a 3 part step done in two counts – 1 and 2. The first two steps are quicker than the third, on the beats “one and” and the final step slower on the 3 beat or count 2.

A step ball change can be a triplet, as can a botofogo.

It is the counts that are important for this step so getting your children to udnerstand the music and its beats is key.

Musicality

To help them understand the counts – start listening to different types of music and clap along to the basic beat -“1,2,3,4” – try it with faster and slower tracks.

Then try clapping “1,&,2,&,3,&,4,&” these are the half beats so in a 4 beat bar you clap 8 times.

Then try mixing it up with “1,&,2,3,&,4” so you clap the rhythm of a triplet (quick, quick, slow)