curated by Minjin Bataar
Dancing can create a variety of different emotions, and we reflect those emotions in the way our body responds to the music, to our partner, to our own internal narratives. Each dance has its own personality, its own heart and soul, and so do we as dancers.
For a month where we have prioritized the emphasis on women feeling confident, comfortable, and powerful within their own individual spaces in the ballroom community, it only made sense for us at Waltz Tango Foxtrot to give a voice to the women in this community directly.
We asked women in the collegiate ballroom community which dances makes them feel the most empowered. Here’s what we heard.
because… “my partner and I finally get tango, and now it feels sharper and clearer. I feel good dancing it.”
because… “the character — the seriousness of the dance gives me a sense of power.”
because… “with a good partner, tango makes me feel like I’m on my way to fuck someone up.”
because… “although I suppose empowered isn’t the best word, it’s a very fierce dance and you get to be so extra with your movements.”
because… “the music really gets me going, and it’s easier for me to be intense or fierce than elegant or graceful or gentle, because that’s closer to my actual personality.”
because… “it has the most power and attack. The steps feel more deliberate, and when you turn your head in promenades and turns it has a stronger impact. I think I definitely feel it more in American Style tango.”
because… “I think it’s the dance that showcases the follow the most, which makes me feel really powerful and beautiful. In some dances I feel like the lead is doing most of the work, but in International Style rumba I know it’s me. It makes me feel emotionally connected to the music and my lead and what I’m doing with my body.”
because… “I’ve worked on rumba a lot with my coach and I feel so stable and sharp right now.”
because… “rumba is very slow, and powerful. I feel like I have full control over my body when I dance it, unlike with cha cha.”
because… “if I’m doing rumba well, I feel confidence from knowing I look hot.”
because… “as a follow, you have so much space to move.”
because… “there are so many nuances and gaps that you can fill with your own style.”
because… “I love of the hip movements and the feistiness of the dance.”
because… “I feel like I have all the power.”
because… “samba is just fun and quick, and the shapes it allows you to make with your body are dynamic. I always enjoy myself when I dance it.”
because… “the beat just makes me feel some type of way. Stepping on that beat with a lot of hip? It’s very sexy. The lines you create are so flattering to the body.”
because… “the dance allows you to step into a completely different character, one that is fiery and sexy and inspired by the matador, the flamenco dancer, the afición of corrida culture.”
because… “as a follow, you really get to drive the lead forward.”
because… “it makes me feel the most beautiful from within.”
Cha Cha Cha
because… “the energy that I get from dancing it that makes me feel very empowered and confident.”
because… “it’s the one dance where I really feel like I put my endurance skills to good use. I can absolutely do jiveonjiveonjive.”
We encourage our readers to find the dance that most empowers them while dancing, and to begin every day of practice feeling confident, sexy, and ready to make a statement, whether on the practice floor or the competition floor.