Even if you've competed or judged before we recommend having a good read of these rules.
Modern Jive is a social partner dance that borrows from many dance styles. Well travelled dancers know that each country and region has its own 'dance accent' that adds to the variety and appeal of Modern Jive. There are local preferences that are neither better nor worse compared to what they may be used to - they are just different.
For the Christchurch Champs the following should be noted:
- There are no rules regarding which foot you should use
- There is no concertina requirement as many moves no longer have this property
- When connection with a partner is broken for non-contact dancing it should be regained within 8 Modern Jive counts (16 beats of music)
Right-Left for the Leader, Left-Right for the Follower? Answer: whatever you like.
- You can dance many moves comfortably and in time with the opposite footwork.
- We can add triple steps, kick ball changes, miss out steps - the possibilities are endless without the constraints of a prescribed footwork.
- The increase in popularity of dancing both lead and follow roles also means that footwork is going to be variable without it upsetting partnership or musicality.
- For people who consistently dance one role we encourage leaders to initiate on the right foot and followers to initiate on the left.
- "We have the suggested appropriate Footwork and anything else is a stylistic choice. Consider the suggested Footwork your basic - and it's OK to change to fit the needs of the song, move or partner but the changes should not be consistently there.
- ...There are *usually* 4 whole beats to a bar with many different possibilities for how those beats can be broken up... You could step any of those combinations with either foot and still be on time...." - Courtenay
- "Dancing with your partner and the music is great. Be in time with your motion and connection. Feet change all the time. eg my partner might half time to allow me to move past and reflect the music... opposite feet are involved for 50% of the dancing of that move, doesn't matter, we are still together and with the music." - Deb
- "...the amazing thing with MJ is that it's very much a blank canvas. Once you are comfortable with the canvas/frame then your inside artwork can be very individual in terms of styling which includes feet." - Rebecca R
- "As a level 1 who usually follows but has decided to lead in DWAS, the footwork thing is such a relief!! There are some moves that really need a lead to initiate on the right, but many of them work out (for a level 1) if I end up initiating on my left. It's hard to fight my default setting." - Rebecca B