Fancy Free was in excellent company among the almost 1000 cloggers from all over (including the Czech Republic) making a journey to Gatlinburg, Tennessee for this annual dance workshop. There's also a clogging competition associated with this event.
Unbeknownst to the audience, the props we use on stage sometimes have a life all their own! As Fancy Free Cloggers made final adjustments to our routine for the Hee Haw show at Smoky Mountain Encore, the stuffed toy pig carried by one of my teammates was deemed too small to be visually effective. Our team seamstress has a pattern and can make one for future shows (we plan on using this dance throughout the year), but she didn't have time to create a custom pig before the trip to Tennessee...
Clogging, then fair food! (Don't try it the other way around.) After eight workshop classes, I searched the Osceola County Fair for the perfect snack before settling in to watch the Florida Clogging Festival clogging competition.
For this clogger, it doesn't get much better than a clogging festival on your birthday weekend! Put that festival in the Florida sunshine during February, and POOF! A plane ticket gets purchased.
Cooped up cloggers in Ohio are ready to dance! Approximately 162 of us came out for the Cabin Fever workshop at Baku Grotto Hall in Mansfield. There was even a clogger from Canada in attendance! Fancy Free Cloggers brought three dancers to this event, one sporting a "spectator" armband due to a recent knee injury.
Nothing cures winter doldrums like a clogging workshop! It was my privilege to join approximately 161 delightful folks in Mansfield, Ohio last weekend to dance it out at Cabin Fever, hosted by the Buckeye Country Cloggers.
Every trip has its challenges. Same as last year, I drove the 140ish miles to Mansfield the night before Cabin Fever. The difficulty came in trying to eat dinner Friday.
Welcome to February! What are all the cloggers up to? I'll start!
Here's what THIS clogger is currently...
Talking Feet: Solo Southern Dance of the Appalachian, Piedmont and Blue Ridge Mountain Regions by Mike Seeger, with style profiles and footlatures by Ruth Pershing. There is a documentary by the same name which I do not currently own, but I have found clips online. More to come about this book in a future blog post.
The national dance list/fun dance challenge has left me with a dilemma: do I cut long, repetitive songs to better fit into performances, or leave them as they are so my teammates and I can nail the routines at fun dances?
Time to review the snow day policy at your dance studio! Is class automatically cancelled with local school closings? Does your director post it on social media?
A few missed classes due to snow are inevitable in many parts of the country. When those snow days come, here are a few activities to keep you prepared for the next class or performance:When those snow days come, here are a few activities to keep you prepared for the next class or performance:
2018, the Year of the Dog! With a capital D and that rhymes with C and that stands for clog! (That was for you, Jordan.)
Holiday break is over for most dance studios, but there's still time to contemplate your current status and goals for 2018; Chinese New Year begins Friday, February 16.
Interested in trying a clogger pageant? Kaley Conn and Summer Hanson from Clogging Connection (Florida) share the preparation techniques that helped them win crowns at the Miss Southeastern Clogger Pageant.
Anybody else clueless but curious about clogger pageants? I've seen ladies wearing crowns and sashes passing out awards at clogging competitions and that was pretty much the extent of my knowledge on this topic.
Enter Kaley Conn, who was recently crowned Overall Queen for ages 12+ in the Miss Southeastern Clogger Pageant. One of Kaley's first missions as Queen is to spread the word about this pageant after she and a younger teammate both had wonderful experiences with the event
Cloggers (and non-dancing folks) want their hard work and accomplishments recognized! Fancy Free holds an awards banquet to recap each year before a new one begins. It's also a great excuse to eat!
I feel sorry for the audience at big shows. Sure, they get to sit in comfy seats and get the best views of all the razzle dazzle, but they don't know the inside jokes that develop during rehearsal, the hustle and bustle of keeping performers and props where they need to be, the last-minute adjustments due to mistakes or malfunctions, or the goofy things we all do while waiting in the wings. The audience is missing out!
Christmas season calls for parades. Night parades call for lights. HomeTown HoliDazzle in Wilmington, Ohio combines all of this and more!
Fancy Free Cloggers once again snagged a spot in the parade lineup. This event is perfect to get FFC in the mood for our upcoming performances in the Murphy Theatre's Cartoon Christmas!
Even the savviest holiday shopper may find it difficult to check clogging relatives off the shopping list. It's not like you can camp outside the local clogging superstore on Black Friday and fill a cart with bargains. (We can dream about it, though!) Here's a list of ideas to get you started:
Looking for something fun to do over the Thanksgiving holiday break? Here's a Christmas card to print and color for all your clogging friends!
"Pretty Little Angel Eyes" is officially in the repertoire for Fancy Free Cloggers! When's the next fun dance?
FFC enjoyed learning this bouncy routine as part of the national dance list/fun dance challenge. Many teammates already knew and loved the routine but hadn't performed it in years. The rest fell in love as soon as I played the music!
Fancy Free Cloggers celebrated Halloween, which conveniently fell on our usual class night, with a simple party. Nothing crazy. Evie cooked up a pot of chili, everybody contributed a snack (My cheese ball was such hard work, ha-ha!), and we showed up in costumes, ready to dance and eat! Evie's Halloween decorations have been in the studio all month, so all she needed to do was set up a few tables.
Clogging in my oh-so-glamorous unfinished basement is no longer a solitary pursuit, at least not on Monday nights. My new teammates in Nebraska, Tennessee, Texas, Florida, and other faraway lands dance right along with me during Tapped Out class!