Country Dancing

Down the Rabbit Hole


For those of you who personally have had a conversation with me, you know how easy it is, while telling a story, for me to go down the rabbit hole. If you don’t know what that saying refers to, it means that I can go off on one (or several) tangents and then circle back to my original story. That’s what happened to me while deciding on this month’s subject and article.

Recently, I ran into some former line dance students of mine, two married couples, and I was pleasantly surprised to hear what the one husband recalled about my classes. It was ten years ago when I taught the class he was in, and he was one of the recipients of the “most improved dancer” award; he claimed it is proudly displayed on his wall next to his college degree. I’m not sure if he was serious, but it definitely produced a chuckle from all of us.

He also shared that anytime he hears the song “Black Velvet” by Alannah Myles, he is transported back in time to my class. He honestly admitted that he doesn’t remember the dance, but he made my day with that story. They asked if I was still teaching line dance; unfortunately, I had to break the news that I don’t teach a basic beginner class anymore.

As I walked away from that fun group, my mind went from that chance meeting down many rabbit holes; and I realized how many people have taken my line dance classes over the years. I know that most of them moved on to another pastime, pursued a different form of dance, or took line dance classes from another instructor.

I wished that I had more time to offer a beginner class in Trumbull County as well as back in Mercer County PA, where I used to teach. Regrettably, if I offered a beginner class, eventually those people would learn enough to move up another level, and I would continually have to offer a new beginner class. At the present time, if anyone asks for a beginner lesson, I refer them to a few other teachers in the area. Truthfully, I miss teaching the beginner level, with the new students’ excitement of delving into the world of line dance!

Then my memory shifted to the song he remembered; and I knew that it was a very easy dance. So, I figured I would use it to share in this article; however, even though I could recollect the steps, I couldn’t find the step sheet on any of the websites that I use. I wondered who I learned the dance from, because I found my own typed up step sheet in my file. That means that I might have learned it from a video when I first started teaching line dance thirty years ago!

Here’s another dance that I usually teach in a basic beginner class; I like it for several reasons: it can be danced to almost any song, it is a one wall dance, you can take out the ½ turns to make it easier for beginners, and it adapts to be a contra dance. (When you have two lines of people facing each other):

Nashville Twist

It’s always enjoyable when I run into former students; I never know what rabbit holes I might end up in!!

Dori Yez teaches Country Line Dancing at these Ohio SCOPE Centers: Howland on Monday evenings (Seasoned Beginners) and Wednesday evenings (Improver & Intermediate) plus the same level in Cortland on Friday afternoons. Due to room size and attendance, Dori can no longer accept new students in any of her classes. There is a waiting list for a new “novice/beginner” class.

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