Ballroom Dance > Small Competitions - What is the Value?

Discussion in 'Ballroom Dance' started by DanceMentor, Apr 22, 2003.

  1. DanceMentor

    DanceMentor Administrator

    I'm curious what value you place on small competitions. I know that there might be less competition and a smaller audience. But I'm wondering if money is better spent on the large competitions since those are the ones that count on a national level. On the other, I know some people opt for small competitions out of convenience because they are closer. So why would you want to spend your money on a small competition instead of a larger one?
     
  2. Laura

    Laura New Member

    It really depends on the person.

    One friend of mine only goes to small competitions because she likes the friendlier and more supportive atmosphere, not to mention the smaller expense. She finds very large competitions to be too high-pressure, to the point where she doesn't really enjoy herself or perform well.

    I prefer larger competitions, but don't like travelling too far from home. I'd much rather go to a medium-sized competition in my own time zone than fly across the US to a large competition. It's not so much the expense, but rather dealing with the three hour time difference. If my event is at 11am, then that's like 8am at home unless I go several days early to adjust. I just don't feel very comfortable in this situation.
     
  3. dancingfool

    dancingfool New Member

    Smaller comps are sometimes good for 'practice' in preparation for a larger comp down the road.
     
  4. SDsalsaguy

    SDsalsaguy Administrator Staff Member

    Yes – and they are also an excellent venue to actually get noticed by, both by the judges on the floor and the others in attendance. At the larger comps the judges have less time to pay attention until the final round as they are viewing more couples and, as soon as you can be "eliminated" they (often) no longer pay attention. Alain Doucet makes a comment to this overall effect in the current issue of Dance Notes (March/April 2003) – that smaller comps provide you the opportunity to get noticed, especially earlier on in your dancing.
     
  5. Vince A

    Vince A Active Member

    I compete in as many competitions as I can - small and large!

    Small ones give me time on the floor and not just sitting and watching someone else dance. Small ones give me more time in front of judges. I want them to see my face on the floor, and hopefully, remember my face, and especially my dancing.

    Small ones usually have less competitors on the floor at one time, albeit, at smaller comps I usually compete in the "open" levels against the 18 year-olds - not in my own age bracket! I've never beaten one of those kids, but I will someday!

    Small ones give me the confidence I need to stay motivated and sure of myself. I no longer become nervous . . . just confident.

    Large ones? What can I say? I love entertaining and being in front of people. The more the merrier! I may have started this at a later-in-life age, but I like it. So the big ones have bigger crowds and many more dancers, which lets me know what I'm made of! I get a natural high from dancing!
     
  6. SDsalsaguy

    SDsalsaguy Administrator Staff Member

    Go get 'em Vince :!:

    ...and welcome to the forums :D
     
  7. DanceMentor

    DanceMentor Administrator

    Welcome to the Forums, Vince! :D
    It's a good point you make about being able to compete and stand a higher chance of winning, although I have personally come in last place at small competitions as well. :lol:
     
  8. pygmalion

    pygmalion Well-Known Member

    So, if you're a new competitor, or considering going into competition, the concensus is that a small/local competition is the place to start?
     
  9. DanceMentor

    DanceMentor Administrator

    Small competitions are a great place to win, feel a sense of accomplishment, and get known with the judges before moving to the larger events. Also, there aren't as many people watching, so it can be less nerve-racking for a new person.
    ...so agree with you, pygmalion! :D
     
  10. Vince A

    Vince A Active Member

    hi Jenn,
    What type of dancing will you be doing??? If you are going to C&W dance, start of with Waltz, Cha, Cha, 2 Step, and WCS . . . adding dances later! There are 2 upcoming event s in FL that you could beging to compete - one in Nov and one in Feb.

    If you are going strictly ballroom or other dances, I'd talk to DanceMentor or SDsalsaguy.
     
  11. pygmalion

    pygmalion Well-Known Member

    Thanks, Vince. Not sure yet. My lesson's this afternoon, and I'm not going to decide anything without input from my good old coach (I bet he's getting sick of me asking him forums-related questions! :lol: :lol: ).

    But, in the meanwhile, I'll check the web. There are a couple good websites that list competitions. That way, I have something specific to ask.

    Thanks again. :D I'll keep you posted.

    Jenn
     
  12. Vince A

    Vince A Active Member

    Try www.ucwdc.com . . . there is an event Nov in Ft. Lauderdale, and one in Feb in Altamonte Springs. Good places to get your feet wet!
     
  13. pygmalion

    pygmalion Well-Known Member

    Altamonte Springs it is. That's effectively Orlando. A 25 minute drive from my house! Thanks. :D

    Jenn
     
  14. Vince A

    Vince A Active Member

    That is a C&W event . . . do you do the minimum required 4 dances so that you can "place?"

    There are 8 dances in all. You can put 1 or 2 or 3 dances, but cannot place 5th through 1st. You should try for the 4 minimum dances - Waltz, Cha Cha, 2 Step, and WCS. Then add ECs, NC2S, Triple Step (Polka), and Triple 2. You need a 90 second routine for each, and preferrably routines that "show" you off. You are the one being judged.

    Pull up the rules and go for it . . . you have nothing to lose and everything to win! And I guarantee that your dancing abilities will "grow" much faster.
     
  15. SDsalsaguy

    SDsalsaguy Administrator Staff Member

    Ok, on the Ballroom side of things I'd aggree with the start small theory. You get exposure and floor time withouth (1) being overwhelmed, and (2) the greater expense often associated with larger comps (funny how economies of scale never seem to penetrate the dancing world, isn't it? :?). Here's a listing of some NDCA Ballroom comps if FL. Also, are you looking to do pro-am or are you getting an am partner?
     
  16. pygmalion

    pygmalion Well-Known Member

    Hey SD. Thanks for the comp listings. I think I'm going to try pro-am first, since my coach has lots of competition experience and can help me get through the rough spots. Plus, finding an amateur partner is a fairly long-term project, I think. After conversations I've had with my coach, I think I'm going to have to knock myself out between now and the end of the year -- and next year, I can start. I have a couple fundamentals I want/need to nail, first. In the meantime, I'm going to go to a few smaller comps, watch, and take notes.

    I'll keep you all posted! :D
     
  17. pygmalion

    pygmalion Well-Known Member

    wow. Amazing how much things can change in a few weeks. My new take: small comps are a good, non-intimidating way to get started competing, learn how the process works, and gain some visibility.
     
  18. angie

    angie New Member

    What I have witnessed with my own dancing experience and that of my children is that the more people you are in front of the better. I do believe that the smaller/local competitions are the best place to start for a lot of the same reasons others have said such as (fewer competitors, much more exposure to the judges, etc..,) but my experience has been that the smaller comp. judges are willing to give you more feedback and instruction due to the calmer competition. I have found this to be invaluable!!
     
  19. angie

    angie New Member

    Yes! Watching my children dance over the years in team and partnering couples the smaller competitions are vital for the more personal approach and for the option of getting to talk with the judges and receive their view points so that when you get to the bigger competitions, you will be that much more prepared!!
     
  20. cornutt

    cornutt Well-Known Member

    If you're only doing 15-20 dances (for whatever reason), a smaller comp can be the way to go. 20 dances in a one-day comp is a pretty decent day's work. 20 dances spread over four days is boooooorrrring -- and you do every dance cold, because it's impossible to stay loose when you only have one dance every two hours. :rolleyes:
     

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