Saturday, July 21, 2012

Blues Dance

After repairing my computer, Damon Natch Burke and his wife, Amy Davenport were going to take a Blues Dance Class at the Zebra Room (2609 Gowen Street, Orlando) . Damon suggested I meet him there so he could give me my repaired tablet. Of course I asked if I could stay and sketch. Damon talked to the instructors and they were fine with the idea. Cars drove inside what looked like a residential backyard and parked on the lawn between orange trees. I arrived at the same time as a petite girl from Knoxville Tennessee.

 Unfortunately the air conditioning in the Zebra room was broken. That didn't stop this group of dancers. People kept arriving with fans and one couple showed up with three huge industrial fans. It was bliss when the breeze hit. With all the fans on however you couldn't hear the instructors talk, so the fans were turned back off. I liked the premise that dance is an intuitive dialogue, or conversation between couples. Simple exercises started with couples facing each other and touching palms. They needed to stand close and move as one. They stepped together forward and back to the beat of the blues. When a lead dancer would spin his partner, she could go with the flow of his up beat pace or slow down the spin at the apex and dip in slow motion. Her desire for a slow sensual movement could then be followed up by the lead. The sensual dance conversation could continue without a word.

Prints are available for each sketch for $250 and many originals can be purchased for $400. White museum grade shadow box frames are $100 more. You can e-mail Thor at

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