Yesterday we started learning a Paso Doble routine in our lesson with Eddie. Daniel is especially excited about the paso because it requires good posture and sharp movements: he feels like it will help him improve his technique in our other dances. Plus, he loves exhibition-style routines with lots of eye-catching, dramatic moves. We entered Open Paso Doble for the competition in Baton Rouge, hoping we would have the routine ready to go by mid-June. That may or may not happen! We learned enough steps on Saturday that we can get through a 90-second heat, but it’s a pretty challenging dance. The steps are not too complex and the routine is not complicated. The hard part is the musical phrasing. In other competition dances, as long as you start on the “one” (i.e., 5-6-7-8-ONE), you’re generally okay. It’s perfectly acceptable to wait a couple of bars and make sure you catch the beat before starting off. Paso doble music, on the other hand, is very structured. Yesterday, Daniel asked Eddie where in the music we have to start. We were a little intimidated when we found out that we have to start on 3. As in, the third beat after the song starts. Silence–one–two–GO. If we start wrong, or if we don’t get the timing right during the routine, then we’re irrevocably in the weeds. So that’s pretty scary. On the other hand, I get to do a tour jete, which is awesome.
Here’s some competition paso from a few years ago, using the music that is almost always used for paso doble:
And here’s an exhibition paso:
It is cool to watch these top-level dancers and see them doing the same steps we are learning (albeit doing them a lot better!). We are in a little over our heads, but we are challenging ourselves and we’re motivated to improve, so it will come. Will it come by June 17? Not sure. I am still hopeful.
And remember: the man is the matador. The woman is the cape. And there is no bull.