Tag Archives: Dance Moms

Here’s to the dance moms who support their sons

It couldn’t have been easy for her watching her son dance in a purple unitard that matched the girls he was dancing with on stage.

That was probably the worst costume ever for a teenage boy performing with his jazz class back in the 1980s, especially in the South, where boys play football.

They don’t dance.

But to be honest, I was in pure bliss dancing the choreography to the song “Shout” by Tears for Fears.

I don’t know if I truly believed my mother when she told me she liked the dance.

She was at best a reluctant dance mom. My sister dancing, that was no big deal.

But I think me asking to take dance classes, don’t think she was really all that thrilled.

I played baseball, and sucked at it. I also played high school football.

But the notion of her son asking to take ballet and jazz, well I know it through her.

My father wasn’t thrilled, that’s for sure.

But to her credit, she let me do it.

I know she was worried about what other people thought.

No one question’s a boy’s masculinity or sexual orientation when you play football.

But back then, taking ballet or any other form of dance. That’s another story.

My mom’s a great mom, don’t get me wrong.

When I returned to ballet as an adult, she seemed excited when I invited her to whatever performance I was in, whether it was the Nutcracker, Romeo and Juliet or Billy the Kid.

 

I do wonder, though, what it would have been like to have had a mother who fully supported me earlier. But I’m not complaining.

I’ve know other guys whose mothers flat out did not let them dance.

That’s why I truly admire the moms of the few boys at the schools where I’ve taken class.

While I think its more culturally acceptable nowadays, the stigma still exists and is a reason parents don’t encourage their boys to dance.

It takes a truly courageous mother as well as son to embark on a dance journey.

I’ve heard some say they’ve had to put up with snide comments. Others fear, and legitimately so, that their sons will be bullied.

But still, I’ve observed mothers and parents in general, who have given their support through hours of classes, rehearsals and performances, with words, money and even put in hours helping with costumes, props and other things backstage throughout their career.

I am thankful with Mother’s Day tomorrow for the moms who have encouraged their sons when their sons have wanted to dance.

They play a vital role in the dance world.

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Watching Dance Moms: 30 minutes of my life I can’t get back

My daughter and I are big Marvel Comics fans. We go to every movie (my son along with us, but he now lives in another part of the state), and on Tuesday nights, we become avid watchers of Agents of Shield and Agent Carter.

We found ourselves looking for a program to watch a half hour before Agent Carter came on. Among the choices? Dance Moms.

I’ve flipped through channels and watched it in bits and pieces. But Tuesday night was the first time I actually sat down and watched for an extended period of time.

I’m a recreational dancer, so any dance show would draw my attention. My daughter used to dance, and still watches dance shows and knows good dancing when she sees it, partly from going to see the company her dear old dad performs with from time to time.

I couldn’t believe what I saw.

I wasn’t shocked by dance moms acting like hicks from the sticks. Or by a dance teacher/”agent” who looks and somewhat acts like one of my old offensive line coaches from my brief high school football days.

The dancing. That is what shocked me the most.

It was downright horrible. Seriously, I could dance circles around those kids and I stumble around as a bottom dweller in the company-level classes I take.

Basically, the choreography and dancing amounted to this: Walking around and striking a pose, and occasionally doing some acrobatic stunt. I felt sorry for the girls to be honest. Showing how high you can get your leg and doing a back flip isn’t dance when you do very little steps in between.

It saddens me that a show like this is the only picture many people get of dance schools in America.

Pushy moms, yeah I guess that’s funny. Maybe the mean dance teacher, too, makes for compelling television for some.

But the dancing sucks.

It really does.

I’m not a huge fan of competition studios. But I’ve got to believe there are some really good dance schools among them out there.

If you’re going to give a dance school a nationally-televised show, you would at least think they would give it to a studio where you’d be wowed by the dancing.

But evidently moms and a teacher acting like jerks makes for compelling television, rather than quality dancing.