Sunday, August 31, 2008


Choreography is not a trade secret. It is similar to DJing or singing or playing a musical instrument. The mechanics can be taught to and learned by anyone. But like any art, it requires practice and dedication and a passion for dance and music. I learned to choreograph the hard way, on my own, making many costly mistakes; buying imperfect and inappropriate dances and inadequate equipment. But I never viewed any of these setbacks as a reason to stop figuring out how to choreograph dance. I can't dance in RL due to a physical problem and SL was the only way I could fill the hole in my heart. So I practiced with my HUD in various clubs, inviting only one or two friends to accompany me, learned how to use the equipment and learned the tempo of the 35 or so dances that I owned. I quickly learned that creators who use motion capture technology produce the smoothest, most realistic dances. Many of the routines out there are jerky or employ unrealistic movements. And I want everyone who dances with me to feel the same exhilaration I feel when I danced in RL. I am careful when I purchase dances; I employ the "Max" test. While I am testing the animation, I try to picture one of my male friends, Maxfly Nadeau, dancing it. And if I can't, then I don't buy the routine. This keeps me from buying too many of the "female" dances. I have learned to warm up my dances after each time I clear my cache; there is nothing worse than touching a button and waiting 3-4 seconds for the dance to start. These are some of the tricks I have learned to keep performances smooth and I gladly share them with anyone who asks. I also share the fact that I switch the routines every 15-3o seconds and am glued to my desk chair for the entire time I have dancers attached to my Hud. But choreographing dance on the fly (or in advance for difficult rhythms) is so much fun for me and makes it all worthwhile. I want everyone who loves to dance as much as I do to know how to choreograph, too. So I offer "training" about the HUD to anyone who wants. Choreography is not a trade secret.

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