Most women want to look good – and most do. But sometimes, trying to look good, especially while dancing with a partner, does not look good at all. Female dancers who are told that they are the “picture” and the male the “frame” often don’t seem to understand they must also provide part of the the frame – and that how they look and the picture they make doesn’t look good if they don’t stay “framed” by their partners.
The focus and attention of the follower in social partner dancing should not be on her arm “styling” and finger positioning but simply and primarily on keeping her elbows in front of her body and her hands available to the leader. No matter how irresistible she may find her partner, if her elbows aren’t kept in front of her body with enough tone and “resistance” for her partner to move here body, or her hands not where her partner can see, reach, and use them to guide her, her partner will find it hard to lead her (even through a choreographed routine) – and may be tempted to resort to force, verbal criticism, or just not leading at all and letting her do what she wants while he looks for someone else for the next dance. Her primary responsibility is to follow.
A good leader will make his partner look (and feel) good. If she is willing and able to follow, they will both look (and feel) good – with her the picture and him the frame.
© 2012, Oren Pardes. All rights reserved.