New Steps, Old Brain

One of my strengths in dance has always been my ability to pick up quickly on new steps. I remember them as soon as I’m shown them, and pretty quickly they make it to my feet. They don’t look good, they aren’t properly executed, but at least I know what they’re supposed to be. And while I’m still above average in that regard, I think my brain is starting to suffer from an attack of old or is too filled with old steps.

After scrambling to class after work and jumping in a few minutes late, we breezed through our light, single, and slip jigs to work on some changed in the reel. To encourage the kids, my teacher cheerfully informed us that the open champs have the same step in their reel, so aren’t we glad to have it in our novice/prizewinner step? Not me, no. But I caught on soon enough.

We drilled the right leg, then the brave children decided we should dance both right and left leg of the updated step. After a successful run through the right leg, I went into autopilot and bungled my old step with the update in my left leg. A few more runs saw it stick, but I’ll need to drill it at home to be sure. We then drilled the change in our second step, and I caught on amazingly quickly. Of course, left leg happens, but I was pleased by the end of soft shoe.

Soft shoe time always ends too soon, so we were on to changing into our hard shoes and going over the changes to the treble jig. Everything made sense in my brain, but going through to my legs is a completely different story. I also haven’t picked up on how the new steps fit in with the music. So there will be a lot of mental drilling along with physically walking those steps.

No classes for me for a while now due to going out of town for a work conference, so hopefully I’ll have the new steps somewhat engrained in my legs before I return!


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