Switching it up: the challenges of leading a dance

As I mentioned in my previous reflection Alessia and I had come up with a detailed rehearsal schedule and planned out how we would use the limited time we had to teach our dancers the 3 sections of the dance that they were a part of, as well as have enough time to refine and add character to it.

One of the challenges we had foreseen was that we would have some absences during rehearsals, and we had thought through the consequences of these absences: dancers would fall behind, and we would have to give up another session catching them up on it. And we knew how much that would cost us, especially with the 4-week timespan we had. We problem solved and decided to create tutorials for each dance and upload them into a shared folder with our dancers, this meant that anyone who missed a session could easily access the choreography and learn it in their own time, this meant that we did not have to spend more rehearsal time on the same piece.

We had also created our rehearsal plan very specifically so that our initial 3 sessions were purely laying out the foundation of each of the 4 dances. This meant that we were not focusing too much on the detail, but more just on making sure everyone knew the choreography. Since we did not want to bombard our dancers with critique just when they have learned a dance, we instead also decided to create generalised notes in the form of a video where we went through some specific steps we thought could be improved. This made the process of refining more efficient.

dance + tutorial folder

We also happened to have one dancer who missed more sessions than expected and was running 2 dances behind, so I took the initiative to schedule a one on one practice session with her to catch her up on the dance. This lunchtime session helped her gain confidence in the choreography and also gave me a better understanding of her as a dancer, so we were able to guide her better during the process.

One of the unforeseen challenges we faced was that the partner dance and girls dance took more of our rehearsal time than we anticipated. (for context everyone took part in 3 sections of the dance, people were either in the girl’s dance or partner dance and then everyone was in the last to sections) Alessia and I initially decided in order to be efficient she would teach the partner dance, and I would teach the girls to dance, this took use 4 session instead of the 2 we had planned for because the dancers were having a harder time picking up the choreography. So in the last session where there were still some steps in both dances that were not looking quite right, Alessia and I decided to overcome this problem it would be best if we swapped the groups we were teaching so that the dancers had a fresh perspective on how to execute the steps. This solution really helped with the finetuning of the dance and quickened the process.


LO2- Demonstrate that challenges have been undertaken, developing new skills in the process.

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