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Something Good

If you are a dancer, or you have a partner or friend or loved one who is, you already know: we dancers are incredibly critical of our work.

So to watch a video in which I’m dancing and think, before I’ve thought anything else, “That was good!” is a big deal.

Anyway, today I finished a week-long summer intensive session in which I (GASP!) actually talked to people I don’t know and, like, made some friends ❤ This was a really lovely group of dancers, and I would happily dance with any of them again any time.

We learned and performed (via livestream and for a small audience outside the big window of our studio) a brand-new piece choreographed by Ashley Thursby-Kern and Theresa Bautista, and when I watched it, I found myself thinking, “That was good!”

Not just their choreography, or the performance of my fellow dancers–but for once I was able to look at myself and think that.

It wasn’t perfect, of course, but ballet never is. And I think that we did rather a fine job learning and polishing it in the span of five days.

Anyway, for the moment, you can catch it here, with an introduction by Ashley, who is a thoroughly lovely human being:

I’m trying hard not to list the shortcomings I do see in my own performance here. It’s enough to know what I could have done better and will do better next time. It’s enough to look at myself dancing and say, for once, “That was good.”

Highlights from Tonight’s Class

Obvs, the fact that I survived is pretty good. 

Here are a few more, in no particular order:

  • The bit during barre when LAA goes, “And then you penché and you just put your hands on the floor and hang out there for a while” as she drops into a 6:00 penché and everyone’s faces be like 😍😒😐😮😯😨😓 while they mentally calculate how badly they’re about to crash & burn
  • But then everyone finds so, so much more penché than they thought they had
  • The bit where JB keeps cracking me up from across the room between barre combinations while I desperately try to keep it together   
  •  The bit when I catch myself in mirror during the waltz and think,  “Holy shizz, I’m dancing!” (Really, “We’re dancing”—my whole group looked so, so good. So polished!) 
  • The bit where holy crap, where did that extension come from? 
  • The bit where I finish the first side of the waltz in an 90 degree extension devant straight out of a stepover double and get The Nod. All dancers know The Nod. We sometimes live and die by The Nod.  

I also made it through essentially all of Trapeze 2 (we’ll see how/if Trap 3 goes, though :P)—the one thing I really couldn’t do was a catcher’s-hang roll-up, and that’s solely because my rectus femoris cramped like a mofo. The legs, they are tired. Pretty sure the bit where I started going,  “Nope ! Nope nope nope! I’m done!” whilst still wrapped in a trapeze was pure comedy, though.   

My front balance and hip hang to catcher’s hang transitions, on the other hand, were aces. 

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