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  • old style grass

    Hau mitakodapi!
    i saw that there are some old style grass competitions? Does anyone know how to do old style grass dance? i never knew there was an old style?

  • #2
    There is no "Old Style" only interpretations of what is thought to be "Old Style". Talk to ten people and you will get ten different answers.

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    • #3
      so then there is no old style? im pretty sure theres some kind of style a long time ago cus i know its pretty contemperary

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      • #4
        Originally posted by jed View Post
        There is no "Old Style" only interpretations of what is thought to be "Old Style". Talk to ten people and you will get ten different answers.
        I agree totally with Jed, here's the first of ten different opinions:

        -old style grass refers to the way it was done in the past. When? my opinion its the 70s-early 90s, thats when I saw grass being a smooth, flowing style. To me, this modern arm flapping herky-jerky stuff isn't grass dancing. Anyone that knows me has heard that rant at powwows. I mostly can't stand what I see today (well, maybe that's a little harsh).

        -others only refer to "old style grass" as an outfit thing, so they bring out entire outfits or parts of outfits from, say, the 40s/50s. Some of us were told what the dancing was like back then, but we didn't see it.

        so I young guy, say 20 years old was born in 1980, his "old style grass" maybe is what he saw in the late 90s when he was a teen. Someone who is 60 years old, there "old style grass" is what they saw in the 60s/70s.

        -IB

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        • #5
          Originally posted by Iowa_Boy View Post
          I agree totally with Jed, here's the first of ten different opinions:

          -old style grass refers to the way it was done in the past. When? my opinion its the 70s-early 90s, thats when I saw grass being a smooth, flowing style. To me, this modern arm flapping herky-jerky stuff isn't grass dancing. Anyone that knows me has heard that rant at powwows. I mostly can't stand what I see today (well, maybe that's a little harsh).

          -others only refer to "old style grass" as an outfit thing, so they bring out entire outfits or parts of outfits from, say, the 40s/50s. Some of us were told what the dancing was like back then, but we didn't see it.

          so I young guy, say 20 years old was born in 1980, his "old style grass" maybe is what he saw in the late 90s when he was a teen. Someone who is 60 years old, there "old style grass" is what they saw in the 60s/70s.

          -IB
          Don't forget to throw in the regionalisms. If you talk to a guy from Standing Buffalo he will describe one style, but if you head over to Piapot (just a stone throw from Standing Buffalo) you will get a totally different description.

          So different reserves influence things too.

          I still see general regionalisms in the current trends around here. Northern Saskatchewan, Smallboy Camp, Standing Buffalo, Southern Saskatchewan (non sioux), City ndns, each has their own "flavor". Big world of differences when you take a good look.

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          • #6
            Originally posted by sunktanka_sa77 View Post
            so then there is no old style? im pretty sure theres some kind of style a long time ago cus i know its pretty contemperary
            Old Style is a perception. It can not be defined precisely because different people have a different opinion on what "is" Old Style.

            Even if you pick one year, say 1964, and you could go back in time, you would find different grass dancers in different areas wearing variations of grass dance clothes and dancing a bit different. There is no ONE Old Style.

            Makes the whole idea of Old Style and Contemporary kind of pointless.

            I much prefer splits by age and let the dancers dance their personal style!

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by jed View Post
              Old Style is a perception. It can not be defined precisely because different people have a different opinion on what "is" Old Style.

              Even if you pick one year, say 1964, and you could go back in time, you would find different grass dancers in different areas wearing variations of grass dance clothes and dancing a bit different. There is no ONE Old Style.

              Makes the whole idea of Old Style and Contemporary kind of pointless.

              I much prefer splits by age and let the dancers dance their personal style!
              YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES, YES,

              thank you!

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              • #8
                As stated, old style outfits that are referred to a basic look unlike today with all cut-bead beadwork, outfits with bright, shiny materials & covered in appliques. Outfits today are there all for flash. They look cool, but..... Remember the substance & the story of the dance.

                Dance steps as well are very much an integral part. Old style grass dance is within the dance steps. Patting the foot on the ground, not lifting your foot above the knee, not too much spinning. Whatever you do with your right foot, balance it out with your left. Being more fluid with shoulder, hip, & body movement. Finishing the song with both feet on ground.

                The over exaggerated body movement with the bird flapping arms, too much spinning, kicking are too much today at powwow. The songs today for grass dance are changing & speeding up as well. All things go along with the changing times. It's all up for interpretation. As it evolves, the origin of the grass dance will always be with us. Learn the story, then you'll get the idea.
                Last edited by chipster; 01-13-2010, 12:59 PM.

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