Pat Traymore – Tribute

Pat Traymore – Tribute

I am certainly not alone in feeling sad with the notice of Pat Traymore’s passing.  There are many that have been around longer, and knew and worked with her more intimately. That itself is a testament to the vitality and healthful benefits of dancing that Pat’s long life touched so many people in the dance business, and so many of those early people are still around.  Pat will be remembered, not only for her long history with the industry and Arthur Murray’s®, but for her personal attention she provided to the multitude of teachers of dance along the way.  She was one of the few who always seemed to know that our jobs were only important because of how we could help students become better.

She would remind teachers that once a student chose to go to a showcase or compete, it was the job of the professional to make sure the whole package was there.  It was not enough to know the steps, but did they dress appropriately.  It was not enough to dance on time, but did they know how to come onto the floor.  How would the steps they learned help their development and progress?  How would knowing the material better, make your partner feel better dancing with you?  I remember her telling students to wear clothes that make you feel beautiful and that you could also wear in real life, not just on a dance floor.  I remember her advocating for that in competitions as well, though it never caught on.  Judge the dancing, not the outfit.

I really cannot remember if it was the late 1960’s or early 1970’s when I first met Pat.  She was certainly instrumental in my certifying as a Judge, delaying the test for a year, so I would be 25 when certified, and setting the standards of what I had to accomplish between visits and Final Exams.  We certainly did not always agree, as when she told me my partner and later to be, and still, my wife was too short to dance with.  Playing backgammon with me while on break and just talking, mostly about dancing, but also international affairs, reminded one that she was well rounded and able to match wits and ideas with anyone.  Her standards were high and those that knew her were glad they were.

There may be more famous stars within the industry.  There are few if any that have shared as much with so many.  She has the well-deserved accolades and many more, with all of us knowing that the teachers and students she worked with will long remember her as one of the grand Ladies of the Dance.

Bless you Pat,

Published – Dance Week

Vol XXXXV No 25

September 9, 2022

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