Dancing Tid-bits Letter #46, Thursday, April 12, 2001

Dancing Tid-bits
Bronze Samba! O' My God

O' My God"" is really exactly what came out of my mouth when I saw the new ISTD Bronze (Associate) syllabus. Why? I will tell you why! Samba is a slightly more difficult Dance for beginners. The old Bronze syllabus including the Corta Jaca and Backward Bota Fogos was hard enough, but now some Silver and Gold Figures have been added at this level. Let's see:

The most outrageous change seems to be my Foot, I mean the Foot Change whereby you both end up being on the same Foot in Right Shadow Position. It used to be in the Gold Syllabus. Now, at Bronze level you should learn to do a Foot Change, proceed with Shadow Traveling Volta, back to Closed position after another Foot Change etc. Does it sound reasonable to you or have you forgotten your days when you were a beginner student and doing a Bota Fogo or a Reverse Turn was a battle. I frankly think it is too much to ask of a student at this level.

Also from Silver, the following Figures have been now moved to Bronze:

a. Closed Rocks
b. Criss Cross Bota Fogos (Shadow Bota Fogo) and Criss Cross Volta
c. Solo Spot Volta Movements and
d. Rhythm Bounce

The figures require more than just Basic skills An argument can be made, Well! these syllabi are basically meant for teachers training at Associate, Licentiate and Fellowship levels, but my understanding is that these levels provide guidelines for Competitions and Medal Tests also.

From Gold (Fellowship) to Silver (Licentiate): I have no qualms about other changes from Gold to Silver such as Plait and Rolling off the Arm which are now in Silver rather than Gold. That is something I can live with but Foot Change and Shadow work at Bronze Level..unh unh!

What do you think? With Best Wishes, Max

Questions and comments to Dancemax@aol.com, thank you.

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