We all have beginnings. We discover something by ourselves by accident; a friend suggested something to us; we were curious so we tried; boredom got you out of the house to discover something new; you were just looking for something online, and you found this new thing; and on and on. The adventure never ceases.
My very first exposure to west coast swing dance was by accident. It was a normal Saturday night at the ballroom dance. I saw a couple dancing this kind of dance, and I asked someone what kind of dance are they doing. Someone responded, “west coast swing!” That made me curious. I have not seen that kind of dance before, and I have danced to many types of dances. After asking several dancers, I was told of a monthly west coast swing dance sponsored by a local non-profit west coast swing club in town. I went one time and I never stopped!
In the late Spring of 1999, I attended my first monthly dance of the Biggest Little Swing Dance Club, (BLSDC), the non-profit West Coast Swing club of in town. My first beginning lesson was like follow, verify later. Honestly, I told the instructor, “I do not understand the steps” He responded, “Just follow and do what I teaching.” After that first one-hour lesson, I got hooked though I was very clueless! The technique, counting, and music were very foreign to me. Remember, I was in the ballroom and east coast swing world. But I persisted. I attended the 3-monthly lessons of the Beginner Level west coast swing workshop in the same ballroom taught by the owners of the ballroom. I continued attending the monthly dance of the BLSDC. I practiced on the kitchen floor of my house at night, and on weekends.
In July of 2000, I attended my first WCS dance convention. I competed in the Jack & Jill Begining Level in a “Westcoastswing Dance Championship” convention in Sacramento, California. I was chosen to be in the semi-finals! I was happy, nervous but excited! that was my very first competition and I made it to the finals! During the finals, we were asked to do the final couple dancing as a “Spotlight,” where couple dances alone as opposed to a group dance in the middle of the dance floor while judges judged us. Can you imagine my nervousness and excitement at the same time? Well, it was a jack and jill, where the partner was picked via a random system. ” You never know who you will pick!” I did not win the finals, but that gave me more confidence to pursue this dance! And the rest is history.
So, how did you get involved in the west coast swing?