I took my first hip hop class with Leslie Feliciano today.
I loved it!
Leslie’s style was really awesome, it wasn’t too hard for me to pick up on because he broke down the stylized steps really well (he taught me how to jerk…so that should tell you something right there). I don’t know the name of the song we danced to, and he wouldn’t tell us because he sells CDs with the songs he uses, but I liked the song choice a lot too.
As class began, Leslie made a point of asking people where they were from whenever they asked a question. At BDC there tends to be visitors not just from all over the US but all over the world. Just that one hip hop class had dancers from Poland, Argentina and Sweden. Leslie welcomed everyone by answering their questions and ending with “Welcome to New York,” or, in the case of the girl from Argentina, “Bienvenido a Nueva York.”
A few eight counts into the choreography we just ran what we had a few times to get it into our heads. After the third time of this, Leslie stopped the music and looked at me.
“Girl, where you from?”
“Where?” (he had to ask again because I barely squeaked out the word, embarrassed for being singled out)
“Ah, CT got swagga!” At which I blushed uncontrollably and really needed a drink of water.
With that boost of confidence, the rest of the class went really well. I picked up the combination well enough to have fun with it by the end and not worry about looking like a fool. That is until, we split into two groups. I was in group two so after we watched the first group we took the floor as the song started over. I placed myself towards the middle, but not front and center as it was my first time in his class.
About four counts before the choreography started, Leslie said “Let’s see it CT!” and squatted down by the mirror right in front of me. This of course resulted in me stumbling around until the last count of eight when I finally got my head back and remembered the dance.
The good news is, I did well for most of class. I don’t usually get that nervous, but I also don’t usually get singled out in a class I’ve never taken and don’t know anyone!
The bad news is, Leslie is actually going to be away for a month, so I won’t even get a chance to redeem myself until October. Rest assured though, I’ll definitely be signing up for his class as soon as he’s back.
My other class today did not require swagger, and that was Sheila’s jazz class which I took on Monday as well. Her class was awesome again, which meant I was a sweaty mess by the end of it. During warm up Sheila came around to adjust us as we stretched which really helped me get the most out of the warm up. For choreography we did the same combination from Monday’s class so I had a little bit of an advantage since I was the only one who was there both days.
Even though it was the same choreography I still picked up things differently and the dance actually felt really different from how it did on Monday. After class I thanked Sheila and she gave me advice to not mark the dance when I’m learning, even if I was there Monday because “there’s always more you can learn.”
Sheila’s class definitely motivates me to work hard and I feel like she gives everyone individual attention which is really nice. I’m definitely looking forward to being in her class again on Monday.
What I’m not looking forward to is how sore I’m going to be tomorrow!