Joyce and I competed in the Roanoke Valley Star Dance this past weekend. This was the fifth competition that we have competed in. Three students from the Augusta Ballroom Dance Center went. Joyce danced with Val and I danced with Megan. The day started early as registration was at 7AM and practice time was available until 8AM. The first heat was at 8:15.
Megan and I were in the first heat, which was a Waltz. We started out busy as we were in the first five heats. Joyce’s day started a little later since her first heat was number ten. Val was with two students and it just worked out that Joyce and I weren’t usually on the floor at the same time. This was nice as I was able to watch Joyce and to this untrained, non-professional I thought she did a great job. I went into this competition with a different mindset. When I dance I would try to be so perfect that when I made a mistake, I would lose all concentration. I could never recover and the rest of the routine was a big mess. My plan this time was to keep smiling and move on. I know that I made a mistake each time I was out there, but I kept smiling. I remember one time, I looked over and caught one of the judges watching us, and I smiled at him and he smiled backed. In the past, this is something that I could never have done. That is when I knew that my confidence was improving. Megan and I had so many heats in a row that we were done with the smooth dances by 9:15. We watched Joyce and Val until they were done around 10:00.
We went and changed into comfort clothing before having lunch. After lunch, we went and changed for the Rhythm dances. We didn’t have so many back to back heats, so the afternoon was not over as quickly as the morning. I cannot speak for Megan, but I feel that we have more fun with the rhythm dances. Being new to this, I do not know if it is because of the style of dance or we just enjoy them more. We laugh a lot and even sometimes sing to the song. Well, Megan sings to the song, if I were to sing, I would be arrested for noise pollution. My point is that I seem more relaxed dancing a rhythm dance.
Joyce and I talked about how we felt when the day was over. We both felt that this was the best competition for both of us. I said that usually afterward I feel terrible because I go over every mistake. I told myself that I was not going to do that this time and I did not. I was feeling very good about my dancing. I have accepted that I need to enjoy the journey. I am enjoying the journey and Joyce and I are growing as dancers. Megan and I talked when we were finished and she said that she was proud of me and that I danced better than I ever had. She could see the improvement in my confidence from when we competed in Ashville this past spring. When Val talked to Joyce about how he felt the day went he told her that her performance in the smooth dances was very strong. That she did well in rhythm, but there were some things that they needed to work on. But it wasn’t anything that they could not fix.
Before we went back for dinner and the awards, we had time to walk around downtown Roanoke and relax from the day. I was looking forward to some social dancing after dinner and the award ceremony. I was only half paying attention as the awards were announced and I was totally surprised when I was announced as the male amateur winner. I was so shocked that I had to lean over and ask Joyce what I just won.
It was a great weekend for Joyce and I as we got to spend time with people that we have formed a friendship with and have the pleasure to dance with. Our comfort level has improved and our dancing is improving each and every day.
Now it is time to get back to working on our showcase routines for March and to continue to working on and improving our competition routines.
Until next time, keep dancing….