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Date Posted: 22:55:31 08/08/17 Tue
Author: not an unreasonable request
Subject: Sorry if I was unclear. I wrote the "not an unreasonable request" post. That was my first comment on this thread. I am not a TC (that was a different poster).
In reply to: Your story is full of holes 's message, "Wait, What? You clearly stated you were a TC, yet now? Are you a novice adult? You are baffling. If you are even a music 'instructor' then you should also be very aware that styles and methods of play will also vary depending on the musician and instrument" on 05:33:58 08/08/17 Tue

I am a professional musician (not a feis musician) and have played and taught for many years. I've also done Irish Dance for quite a few years. While I am not the best musician or dancer to be found, I have been told that I have excellent rhythm, in both art forms. That said, my statement was just my opinion.

While I do agree that "styles" and "methods of play" may vary from one musician to another, I don't think that Tempo (the speed) of the music is particularly part of someones style. Someone could have a graceful or aggressive style at any speed, or a modern or traditional style at any speed. For a dance competition, the tempo should fall within the guidelines that are laid out. I think Dancers should be able to adjust to slight variations, but should not have to adjust to a tempo that is outside of the tempos that are set by the Commission. While it is true that an experienced dancer can adjust their speed, it is also true that a good musician should be able to play at a specific speed. Many feis musicians play with metronomes to ensure their speed is correct. This is greatly appreciated by the dancers!

Choreography is painstakingly created to fit the set speeds of the music, so I don't find it unreasonable to expect the music to be within the tempo guidelines.

I do agree with other comments that dancers should try to practice to different music, played on a variety of instruments, and with different arrangements. It is a shame if a dancer only ever practices to accordion music, and then panics if a bagpipe or whistle or fiddle shows up to play.

I have been at feises where the music was wildly off from the set tempos. It really isn't fair to the dancers. Sometimes the adjudicator stepped in and corrected, and other times they did not. More than once, I've seen dancers struggling to execute slow hornpipe steps to trad hornpipe music. I have never understood why the judges didn't stop and correct the tempo.

I know that "back in the day" for Champ Set dances, it was the responsibility of the dancer to indicate which tempo she wanted... instructing the musician to play faster or slower until they were at the tempo the dancer wanted. That certainly added a whole other layer of skill that us modern dancers have not had to learn. If that is how it is going to be, then dancers would need to be taught how to do that. I don't see it going back to that, at this point.

One poster said I was trying to pretend to be an expert on all. I don't claim that. But I do have enough experience with both music and dance to have an opinion on this subject.

And after all that... I just have to shake my head when people "declare" that two posts are from "the same person". You can certainly disagree with what I wrote, (or what both of us said) but if you insist that we are one person... then you will just be completely wrong. Not sure why it is so hard to believe that two people could have similar thoughts and opinions on this subject.

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