The Viennese Waltz – by Betsy Sue Clarke

The Viennese Waltz by Betsy Sue Clarke

"The Viennese Waltz"


DK Dancer Betsy Sue Clarke shares her story about learning the Viennese Waltz at Dancesport Kingdom.


"I have a story of the night we had Viennese Waltz as a group lesson before the social Ballroom dance.   It might seem strange that one particular dance can have such an effect on a person, but it does and it always has for me. The first ballroom lesson I ever took, it was what I asked for, yet had never seen it danced.
I often dream vividly of whirling ballgowns and tuxedos spinning around the floor in a great hall, glorious in all its gilted embellishment, beautiful painted frescoes on the walls, a momentous celebration of New Year in Vienna. I'm there, in buttery yellow, dancing with a man who loves to spin me faster, who loves the energy of dancing as one so fast. There's so much laughter as we spin, it's just exhilarating. Yet it is absolutely real and I know I've been there and was there.
As I listened to the dance teacher taking us through the first steps of the Viennese at your studio I felt out of my depth but kept going. By the end of all the steps I knew I was only grasping half of it and felt very nervous as we started to practice the whole routine.
But somehow my feet knew what was happening and as we gained some momentum it just happened - I got a couple of rounds in and felt that room come to life a little. Something was awakening in me.
We started the social Ballroom dance and thankfully it wasn't too far in before the Viennese Waltz was called because I was sure I'd forget what I'd learned. I grabbed the lovely guy I'd been practicing with and he was unsure but we took our place on the floor and the music started.
And then I was in heaven!
We started spinning, my feet in their beautiful yellow shoes were moving in a blur without me. My buttery yellow ballgown rose around me and we twirled and spun and I couldn't stop laughing, the exhilaration intoxicating! I was there, I was back there in that ballroom and every part of me knew that dance in detail. We finished the first dance and I looked at my stunned partner, heaving to catch his breath. So I asked if we could go again - he was panting but wasn't blue yet, so yes! Then the music started and it happened all over again and I was on a cloud, so much joy I wanted to cry.
It was a thrill to finally dance what was in me and I felt so at one with the girl in Vienna.. a beautiful joyous, freedom filled girl with a heart dancing full with happiness.
The feeling of this dance is what I yearn for again!"