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March 26, 2007

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The “Hsueh-tze Effect”

We had just completed an exciting week of intensive workshops with Hsueh-tze Lee from Boston, comprising of two weekends (3 x 1.5-hr classes for each day, on both Saturdays and Sundays) and two classes during the week nights. It was certainly somewhat physically demanding, as evidenced by the slightly tired faces when comparing photos taken at the end of the first weekend with that of the second weekend. πŸ™‚

However, by all accounts – some typical comments can be seen here – all the hard work was worth it! During the workshops, there was a level of excitement and buzz which I have not seen in our community for quite a long while. In fact, it was amazing to witness people getting enthusiastic about the exercises and material Hsueh-tze was sharing with us; everyone was simply too eager to get back to the dance floor as soon as possible even though a break had been scheduled.

To be sure, the style taught by Hsueh-tze was not flashy by any stretch of the imagination. The emphasis was on connection (between partners, with other dancers on the floor, and dancing to the music) and a precise “marking” of steps by the leader. Her clear explanations, supplemented by numerous fun and increasingly difficult exercises made the whole learning process a logical and rich experience; of course, it helps that she is an excellent and sensitive follower AND leader and is able to teach both roles equally well. As more than one participant has said, the only regret is that we couldn’t have Hshueh-tze here even longer than the 14 days she was here. Definitely looking forward to having her back in Singapore again!

Some of the most memorable things I learnt during this workshop:

  1. Walk (in close-embrace) with connection and – which I will talk a bit more in another post;
  2. Techniques for followers to express themselves during the dance;
  3. Syncopation in Vals;
  4. Syncopation in Milonga;
  5. Expressing the melody to music by different orchestras.

I suppose this is the “Hsueh-tze Effect” that Jean-Michel had mentioned about!? πŸ˜‰

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1 Comment
  1. Jean-Michel
    Mar 28 2007

    The Hsueh Tze Effect might take different shape or form but one thing is clear… It is there πŸ˜‰

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