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Learning to Dance

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  • Learning to Dance

    Where can someone who doesn't live near a rez learn to dance? I love going to Pow Wows, love to watch the dancers. Wish I could join in but no one around here to teach me. The only time I'm in the ring is during they honor Vet's. Help if possible.

  • #2
    Originally posted by chickendad
    Where can someone who doesn't live near a rez learn to dance? I love going to Pow Wows, love to watch the dancers. Wish I could join in but no one around here to teach me. The only time I'm in the ring is during they honor Vet's. Help if possible.

    As a starting point, there are many powwows that have been videoed and are for sale. On these videos there are individual champion dancers that are showcased in their specific categories. Watch these videos and practice. Once you have the basics, then try to develop your own style.

    I know of many dancers who have turned on some contest songs in their front rooms, basements and backyards and danced for stamina and to practice new "moves."
    Powwows will continue to evolve in many directions. It is inevitable.


    • #3
      Where are the vedios, which are the best, and I figure there are meanings to the moves. How can I learn them also. Lest I forget, thanks for responding to my thread. This site can be so helpful. Wado.


      • #4
        Another question, whick style would be a good starter for someone in their early forties.


        • #5
          Since I teach dance, I would say that it the best styles to first learn, is just the basic step, and then worry about styles. Traditional, or grass would be my suggestion. Grass outfits are relativly easy to get materials for. I see so many beginner dancers start out dancing grass! they then move onto their personal style. Either way, dancing takes alot of stamina. So practicing first would be my suggestion and then practice style steps to see which you like best. During intertribals, depending where you are, you can get out there and dance also. it is a great time to practice and have fun even if you don't have an outfit. Lots of people do that without outfits! and sometimes just learning also! Good Luck!
          Fancy Shawls


          • #6
            Sorry, I forgot one thing, Just imitate what you see on the videos, or ask someone at a powwow to show you the basic step. I had a friend who did that. If you live in the city, there are many cities that have groups that offer culture and dance classes, you might want to look for one of those to get some instuction also. Good luck!


            • #7
              Thanks for responding. I live in the mountains of Virginia. So if I wanted to learn country two step or doe-see-doe, it's here. Grass dance sounds good to me. So the video sounds like the way I need to go. Thanks.


              • #8
                Join and enjoy

                Hey Chickendad, I was in the same position a few years ago. Am part Cherokee from a thoroughly assimilated family. Take the time to learn the dance you like. Get a couple video's and buy some cd's on ebay, any of the Gathering of Nations cd's will get you going. Dance in your backyard. Getting your outfit together is the hardest(costly). I made a lot of mine, bought the rest online or at powwows. Dancing is a great way to honor your ancestry and teach your kids about thier heritage. Get started, it is a blast!


                • #9
                  Thanks to you and everyone for their advice. I think I'll do as suggested and buy some videos and see what comes of it. Hopefully by this summer I'll have an idea of what is going on and join in the dance with the people.


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