Ballroom Dance > S/O--Where do showcases fit into your dance life?

Discussion in 'Ballroom Dance' started by ChaChaMama, Jun 15, 2008.

  1. ChaChaMama

    ChaChaMama Well-Known Member

    I was just reading the Showcase Chat thread and thinking about some things, so I thought I would ask...

    Where do showcases fit into your dance life?

    Do you do them? How often?

    Do you enjoy them more than competition, less than competition, the same?

    What do you think the advantages (and/or disadvantages) are to doing showcases?

    I am currently taking lessons at two places. The one studio hasn't had a showcase in about 3 years, and there are some students--particularly pro-am ladies--who really want to have one.
  2. Laura

    Laura New Member

    Not at all, any more.

    There was a time when I did two a year.

    They are very different from competition, and I enjoyed them wholeheartedly, but I prefer competition.

    Since I prefer competition, the disadvantage is that spending time designing and learning new showcase routines took away lesson and practice time from working on my competition dancing. The advantage was that these showcases had great production values -- we danced on stage in a 500-seat theater, and the show would sell out, plus we had amazing lighting, sound, help with makeup, etc. It was a performance opportunity not to be missed, but now that I've done it a few times I'm not as interested.
  3. NielsenE

    NielsenE Active Member

    I enjoy both competition and showcases. Though I do have a hard time finding the right balance. I've only "skipped" one of the studio showcases (and at that one I still did a medley of two open routines rather than sitting it out completely).

    I'm not really taking enough lessons for all that I try to do (Silver and Open, Rhythm and Smooth, + Showcases). Though the Silver might be phasing out soon which will help.

    I'm finding that I really enjoy lifts. I really enjoy being able to try to use the music more. I do feel that each showcase brings out more emotion and expression in my dancing, and that it carries over to my other dancing. I also really enjoy learning new choreography and now that I have all my open routines, showcases (and formation teams) are my main source of new choreography to play with.

    Of course I also like working on the underlying technique and perfecting routines, so the competition routines that I keep for longer than a showcase are useful there too.

    I suspect if I had more opportunities to preform, showcases would be even more important to me than competition.
  4. fascination

    fascination Site Moderator Staff Member

    I have done 4 showcases in my 3 1/2 years of dancing...only two with the pro with whom I have competed...the first one I was unceremoniously roped intobyt the studio owners and because I didn't know any better, i had a fair amount of fun, did reasonably well for a newb and learned alot about how dance studios work and what I wasn't willing to do again...I did learn alot of fancy steps, if that counted for anything...and it was a good first dip into whether or not I wanted to dance in front of second showcase was a routine that I was way too intense and invested in nailing and which I consequently bungled and was traumatized over...not to mention the collateral damage to my pro...the third however was wonderful...we chose an open bolero routine and I learned alot about my own balance and the universality of bringing good technique everywhere you go...the most recent one was over the holidays w/a different pro and it was just good to have something leisurely to do during a down time and to see if I could bring the skills taught by my main pro into a venue without him...I am hesistant to do many b/c there is so much in preparing for comps which has always been my main focus but, I am glad for what all of those experiences taught me
  5. Warren J. Dew

    Warren J. Dew Well-Known Member

    To me, ballroom dance is fundamentally a cooperative activity, rather than a competitive activity. The reason to compete is ideally just to get unbiased feedback from a broader range of viewpoints than just one or a limited number of coaches.

    If there were a way of getting the same feedback from a studio showcase, I think showcases could be as good or better. There would be the slight disadvantage that floorcraft plays little part, but undivided attention from the judges would make up for much of that. Unfortunately, in practice, I've found that showcase judging generally has an element of sales that is in tension with getting a fully honest critique.

    I haven't done a showcase in a very long time, but when I was competing, I did shows fairly regularly - up to once every month or two. The shows were without a doubt more enjoyable than the competition; sometimes we felt like we were competing just to get the show invitations.

    One advantage of shows over showcases, though, is that one can often reuse the same routine for different audiences.
  6. danceronice

    danceronice Well-Known Member

    I've done two so far with one of my pros. They were fun, especially the first one where I got to do lifts and tricks I don't usually do. I like them, but I'd rather be competing.
  7. nucat78

    nucat78 Active Member

    Don't compete so I can't comment on that. Our definition of showcase is a student and teacher dancing alone or a student couple dancing alone. We do what we call match dances where a student and teacher dance along with another couple. I guess it's a way of easing newbs into eventual showcases.

    I did one match dance in April and will do another in July. I was on an adrenaline and endorphin high after the April dance but I confess I look at them with a mix of anticipation and trepidation. I confess I like it a bit if people are watching me social dance but it's different when I'm "officially on stage", so to speak. The bar is a lot higher for that.
  8. Standarddancer

    Standarddancer Well-Known Member

    don't do too often like once or twice a year. For me, competition more comfortable since we only have to go and perform our "routine" without worrying about entry, ending, stop just right there when music stops stuff like that in the show...
  9. contracheck

    contracheck New Member

    Besides doing Paso and Bolero showdances in competitions, I do about a 1/2 dozen showcases a yr with my former coach-partner for various Senior Citizens organizations in NY/NJ area to stimulate their dull life. I am older than many people in the audience and I want to demonstrate what dance can do to an old man. We start with elegant waltz in formal attires, but she soon changes into skimpy latin dresses and we do Can Can-type of fast flick-and-kick fast Jive. The audience is absolutely crazy about her and they keep on inviting us for more. I usually ask the audience, "do you need ****** tonight?" They roar back, "No." In May, as a parting present, she did Bolero on the tune of Andre Bocelli's "Les Feuilers Mortes" with me for a similar organization in NYC. There was not a dry seat. My eyes were also wet. I find that these performances were worthwhile cause.
  10. latingal

    latingal Well-Known Member

    I really enjoy doing showcases if they are done well. Either a good venue and/or a high caliber of talent. I used to do one or two showcases a year, but my current instructors are competing pros and don't have time to do showcases.
  11. Purr

    Purr Well-Known Member

    At present, they don't.

    I've done three showcase routines, one cha cha, one hustle and one rumba. The first was done as part of a fall showcase that most students participated in. The last two were done for Christmas parties. The rumba routine was, I believe, over 4 1/2 year ago.

    I enjoyed them less than competitions I've attended.

    One advantage is that it gets the student out in front of an audience, where they have to perform. There is no stress of being judged against other students. And, generally the audience is supportive of whatever the students efforts are.
  12. chica latina

    chica latina New Member

    I do ~5 year... so not much comparing to competitions. I did a 5 dance show this past weekend and was fun, but I am still recovering. It tired me more than a competition. I beleive is the warm-up, go , stop routine for 4hours.

    My enjoyment depends on the crowd and location. If the setting is nice and energy is good... I could enjoy as much as a good competition... I dont enjoy them when energy in the room is low, floor is really bad or stress levels are high.
  13. contracheck

    contracheck New Member

    WeI usually receive good commentary on our showdances from the judges like Sodano, Morganti, and the famous lady whose name escapes me (I think that she is Nik's mother). They are surprised what dance can do to an old man's moblity and flexibility. My coach usually came back to tell me that several people told her that they really enjoyed to watch real Bolero.
  14. LucyDiamond

    LucyDiamond Active Member

    I enjoy showcases much more than competitions. I feel they give me more bang for my buck. I enjoy pleasing the crowd and putting smiles on people's faces.
  15. LucyDiamond

    LucyDiamond Active Member

    Oh yeah, I almost forgot. I do about 3-6 showcases a year and have competed 4 times in the past 3 years.

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