Oasis of Line Dancing

Feature: Norm Gifford - choreographer of Burlesque & Sway Me Now...

11/04/2011 19:18

  Norman Gifford is a California dancer, instructor and choreographer of the mega world-wide hit ...Burlesque - a tango written on 5 Dec 2010 to Welcome to Burlesque by Cher.

In Singapore, BURLESQUE was well received in December and is still topping the linedance survey charts here – see Top 50 Linedance of the month on home page. Burlesque achieves world-wide recognition almost upon its release in December 2010, and as documented, it filled the floors in at least 5 big dance events in Denmark, UK and USA without the benefit of a prior workshop teach AND within TWO months of its release. Just to name a few, the dance was a huge hit at the  15th Crystal Boot Awards Weekend, Dancin' with the SoCal Stars, 17 - 20 February Big ‘D’ Bash in Dallas, TX, 2011 ACWDA in Tulln, Austria, 2011 Ft. Wayne Dance For All, Indiana, USA where it was played all 3 nights. By mid February & March, 2011 Burlesque was placing # 1 in almost all the major linedance magazine and newsletter. It was also doing very well in Singapore’s Top 50 Linedance of the Month.
About Norm, he has this to share with you: “As a “single again” person in the late 1980’s, I turned to Country Western dancing and music as a way to re-enter the dating scene… My interest in line dancing came when my then girlfriend, now wife (a linedance teacher and social country dancer) suggested that teaching line dancing might be a good thing for me to do… I started taking line dance lessons and soon had other dancers asking me for help with dance steps.  My education as a Chiropractor gave me a good understanding of biomechanics and with a B.A. in Music Education, I found that I could teach others how to enjoy dancing.   

My first teaching job was in 1993 at a mobile home park teaching senior citizens how to line dance… expanding my teaching activities into Park & Recreation districts all around the greater Sacramento area…The need for a safe, social environment in which to linedance led my wife & I to sponsor dances through the various Park & Recreation Districts where we taught.  I became the DJ, and my wife took over the task of assisting beginners at the dances.  We presently do a dance each month on the first Friday evening at the Clarke Dominguez Gym in Rocklin, CA. 

In 1996, the need for new line dances that appealed to my students led me into linedance choreography.  I have created over 75 linedances over the years (some of which I would just as soon forget) but am thrilled at the success that “Burlesque” has garnered.  I was inspired to do the dance after watching the credits to the movie Burlesque where Cher sang the song “Welcome to Burlesque”.  Reflecting back, I was also driven by the music to choreograph “Sway Me Now” in 2005 after seeing the movie “Shall We Dance?” with Richard Gere and Jennifer Lopez.

I have had the privilege to be an invited instructor at the Pismo Beach Country Western Dance Festival, subsequently Clovis Western Days, and Cambria Western Dance Festival.  I have been the DJ for Scooter Lee’s “Dancing for the Dream” event in the Sacramento area since 2008.” 

Thank you, Norm. The linedance world needs more personality like you to spur the movement to greater height. Cheers!

A little bit information about the video of Burlesque on Youtube:

9 Dec’10 – Juliet lam & Students were first on Youtube with Burlesque w/o ending

14 Dec’10 – Sue & Kathy dancing Burlesque w/ending

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