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Weekend Round-Up, I Guess?

Totally failed to write about my own show, as you do. 😆

It went well—not perfect, but well enough that the audience thought it was. I got a nice word from our director, BG: “Your musicality was perfect.” As a dancer, that’s not a word you hear often.

Also quite a few nice words from folks in the audience—friends and perfect strangers both. E’s husband told me: “You stole the show—I mean that as a compliment!” That was a lovely thing to hear, but I think the best thing was K’s friends, who described my dancing to her as “powerful,” among other lovely words I wish I remembered right now.

K, meanwhile—my friend-turned-ballet partner who made me take myself seriously as a dancer some while back by telling me that I reminded her of Nureyev— described my attitude turn as beautiful, floating, and apparently effortless, with the free leg raised to 90 degrees.

I was glad to hear that, because in both the tech run and the full dress run I didn’t account for how remarkably grippy this particular batch of Marley was and wound up with 3/4s of an attitude turn and the world’s tiniest promenade 😅 During the actual show, it felt great, but that’s not always the most accurate barometer!

In the end, I think everyone was pretty happy with things.

There’s an immense peace that comes over me when I’m on stage. It’s like being immersed entirely in the stream of the present. Time is at once infinite and fleeting. Choreography appears like a divine gift. I don’t have to think about it: it’s just there.

“Did someone order a choreography?!”

There was a weird moment right at the beginning when I realized, with surprise, not only could I actually see part of the audience quite clearly[1], but was sharing a moment of eye contact with a woman out in the seats. That was really, really cool—also a crystal-clear visual memory that I’ll carry forever.

  1. In many theaters, the lighting renders the audience effectively invisible. You might catch the glare off an eyeglass lens, but that’s about it.

There’s something special about realizing that, hey, there are actual people out there, and they’re connected with what you’re doing, and it means something to them. For some performers, that’s kind of a nightmare, but I loved it—especially for this piece, which was full of emotion and human connections (both literal and metaphorical).

Anyway, we followed our terpsichorean triumph with one heck of a party, then hauled our heineys outta bed for class (my calf was iffy, so I opted not to jump—Memorial is a beautiful house, but the floor is pretty hard, and we did a bunch of jumps in our warm-up class before the show). Followed that with an hour of contact improv and 3 hour rehearsal: #dancerlife never stops 😛

This morning I opted to stay home and rest the legs a little, even though I’m adding Monday AM to the rotation. Back to class as usual tonight.

Possibly the best news: BG asked us at our party how we’d feel about performing more often. He has plans in the works. Obviously, I’m so there.

In the meanwhile, though, the next blip on my radar is another gala thing, this time with an excerpt from the Culture of Poverty, on April 30th.

Four years ago, when I stepped back into the studio, I never would have imagined living this life.

Nor would I have imagined becoming Sir Twinkshirt of the Footroller.

Honestly, if you’d described it to me, with all its chaos and exceedingly complicated scheduling, I would have, like, fainted (though it was wouldn’t have changed much, if anything).

In the end, though, this is what happens when we stumble into a driving passion: it, like, you know, drives.

And now, back to our regularly-scheduled laundry day.

fin

The Piece Evolves; I Also Evolve

We added a new segment tonight. It’s got a really cool bit of partnering-by-eyeball. Hard to explain it: my partner and I don’t touch here, so the connection is all in the eyes. It’s super cool when it works! (Which it did, beautifully, once the pieces were in place).

We have another boy, though he’s tentative about being in the Piece. He’s a ballroom dancer, though, so I think he’ll be fine. It’s very tango-influenced, and BG is really good at fitting his choreography to the strengths of his dancers.

In other news, I’ve now registered for a couple of auditions, and I’m looking into a third. The third is for a ballet SI, so it’ll depend on timing and cost. My schedule is about to go plaid through the middle of June, more or less, when I’ll catch my breath for a week or so before summer things really get started.

I’m really rather floored, now and then, by the knowledge that somewhere along the line I somehow became someone who dances professionally. I mean, that was always a goal, but honestly one that seemed distant and possibly unattainable and maybe a little pie-in-the-sky.

And then, boom, I’m confronted with the evidence: people pay me actual money to dance; I audition for dance things more or less as a matter of course, more and more often without asking whether I’m really good enough to be thinking about it. I find myself having to consult my planner thingy to figure out whether I can commit to a dance thing because I might be committed to some other dance thing.

I simultaneously do and don’t understand how this all happened. This I grok: I had good early training; I continue to train with excellent teachers; I have devoted myself to the study of dance; I have been given a body that is suitable for the discipline. That it has all come together like this still seems strange and dreamlike (merrily, merrily, merrily, merrily…).

Perhaps most importantly, though, I feel more and more capable as a dancer. There’s a kind of joy that I first tasted as a wee little kid that comes with trusting your body. When I dance, I feel whole and strong and capable for minutes at a time, but in a way that’s un-self conscious. To dance, sometimes, is to enter the stream of being a little more fully.

I feel perplexed and grateful about all this, which I suppose is as good a way as any to feel.

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