Hurrah!!! And Some Smooth Inspiration

I just turned in the take-home part of my PhD qualifying exams and have thus ended a summer of endless studying and stress. I don’t know how to convey clearly what the process is like to people unfamiliar with grad school, but it involved having to know basically ALL of social psychology (even stuff I hadn’t learned before) and remembering lots of studies and citations, but also thinking about it all on a deeper level.  And then writing 6 essays in 4 hours, and 2 longer ones over the course of a week.  But now that part is done, thank goodness. Huzzah!

Anyway, my partner and I have been working on some new smooth routines recently, which have been really fun and energizing.  In the past I was always sort of afraid of smooth (not that I’m not now) because it’s more independent and expressive than standard, two things that I feel aren’t really in my comfort zone.  Separate me from a partner and I go into “oh no, what is happening now” mode sometimes.  We haven’t done Viennese yet, but I wanted to share this lovely routine by one of my favorite smooth couples, Jonathan Roberts and Valentina, though their partnership was rather short-lived (but very accomplished!)

Bonus video. Watch for the amazing standing spin around 1:20. Sorry for the blurry quality.

Happy back-to-school season for the students (and parents) out there!


Standard’s Pretty Different, Too!

Standard’s changed quite a bit over the last few decades as well.

My partner and I finally finished up our open standard tango routine (woot, all done with learning our standard routines now!) , so I figured I’d post this vintage take on it. The poofy short dresses are pretty amazing. I think it’s interesting how the frame is smaller and shapes are more upright/natural looking than today’s hyperstylized, athletic shaping. But the top dancers of today also seem more technical and precise, at least as far as I can tell.

Here’s a more recent showdance from the Hiltons 15 years ago- more modern but still pretty different from today. Also, boa-feather skirt!