|Dance at Bougival||Dance to the Music||Ballroom Dancing|
Ralph E. Kenyon, Jr
Seven years professional teaching as Ballroom Essentials preceded by various amateur teaching over ten years
A couple of nights before the Eighth Grade Welcome Dance at Chester High in 1955, Shirley Libardi, the older sister of one of my classmates, taught me the basics of the Waltz to the Blue Danube. After I joined the Navy I frequented the EM club dances during the fall of 1961 and in the spring of 1962. During the following year I was occasionally able to go to the dances at the Navy YMCA in Newport when my ship was in port. In those days I did "slow dancing" and "fast dancing", but much of my slow dancing would be called "Society Tempo Foxtrot" now-a-days. There were a few partners I remember with whom dancing was as natural as birds flying. One was from my freshman year - Patricia Morrison - She moved away after the dance, and I never saw or hear of her again - and a couple more, whose names I never learned, were from my Navy days. Those were the days...
A long time passed - a Navy career - moves to five different areas - two marriages - without any dancing that I can recall.
After my second marriage ended, I frequented club and singles dances from the fall of 1981 through the spring of 1984. It was more of the same - slow dancing and fast dancing - which ceased when I began a relationship that lasted until 1992. On my own again, in 1993, I ventured out to the Singles Outreach Services singles network dance and was once again reacquainted with the pleasure of dancing. It was fast and slow dancing again. But there were some ballroom dancers at these dances, and they looked more and more interesting. In 1994 I decided to try it, and I took a lesson. I was captured by the muse, and I haven't been the same since. Ballroom dancing became my new passion. Two years later I had progressed rapidly, taking lessons and dancing 6-7 hours every Friday, and more on other days. I started taking more advanced lessons, and I attended all the ballroom dances I could find. It was then that I met my lovely Lena, who did not have any ballroom experience. The next years were spent teaching Lena and taking more lessons together with her. Dancing has become her passion as well now. We continued to dance at dances and lessons from two to four times per week. In 2008 we competed in the Danse Sport Montreal competition, and again at DanceSport Niagara in 2010 and 2011.