Friday, May 13, 2011

I'm a Dance Fashion Maven!

Yay, Blogger is back up! Let's see what I remember about last night's class.

Wednesday I was hit hard by all the tree sex going on outside, and even Thursday afternoon I had a stuffy head, was coughing up lots of... well, you get the idea. I wasn't sure I'd be up to class at all, but since I was one of the major agitators for a second night of class I felt I was obligated to try. Only one other student was able to make it, so I think it was a good thing I went.

But back to the beginning. I decided to wear my brand new MT10 tights to class, rather than the 5945s I'd worn for every class up to now. The MT10s are a size large, per the package sizing chart, while the 5945s are mediums as recommended by the Artistic Dance Fashions staffer. I'd worn dance tights once a week for several years waybackwhen, and know how to put them on. Once I got the MT10s on I noticed they had an interesting zig-zag section on either side of the back seam in the back of the calf area, probably to allow extra room there. I hadn't seen that before, so I sat down and crossed my legs with my right ankle atop my left knee to get a better look. This contracted my right hamstring, and as I looked down the tights split from knee to crotch with a slow ripping sound. Short useful life my ass! I hadn't even gotten one wearing out of them! Maybe my tights from waybackwhen weren't MT10s after all. Fortunately I'd allowed myself plenty of time, so I shucked off the ruined MT10s and put on my 5945s. I see another trip to ADF in my future; even if I could save a buck or two buying them mailorder, a shop with expert staff needs support.

I got to class on time, and we started with our usual barre exercise routine. After one of the tendus to second I found myself too far from the barre to reach, but finished the sequence hands-off including the relevé. I was very happy with that. The variation in routine at the end was after completing the last fondu derrière we did another one transitioning to attitude. That had muscles and ligaments in all sorts of strange places protesting. As we held the position I worked to get my hips level, my upper body square, my legs turned out and my foot pointed. Forget waterboarding, this is torture. Self-imposed torture, even. Ok, so I'm an inflexible, out of shape, newbie. Sue me.

After a few stretches we went on to center work. I remember last night having lots to say about this, but thanks to Blogger being offline it's all faded into a painful haze. We did spend a fair bit of time working on a more complex adagio and I'm slowly getting the hang of this stuff. I still can't pirouette. I did figure out a bit of the physics and the spotting, but I could only get 3/4ths around to the right and maybe half way around to the left before falling over. Part of my problem is that my balance isn't yet to the point that I can relevé and immediatly be on balance, and part was that by that point I was rapidly running out of steam. We did some changements to make sure we were thoroughly exhausted, and that was the end of the class.

After class I received confirmation of something I'd speculated about in earlier postings. The topic of class attire came up, and the other student admitted, "After you started showing up in tights, I had to." So there you have it, I'm a "dance fashion maven" now, in the words of a friend.

Edit: The tights I'd been wearing were Capezio 5945, not MT11, so I've corrected this posting.


  1. Great blog! (I came across yours via your comment on Dave Tries Ballet.) At the age of 34 I've just started taking a beginning ballet class; it's been several years since I've taken dance regularly (I did some jazz in school). Anyway, I'm enjoying reading ballet blogs especially by beginners and returnees.

    P.S. Are you in the D.C. area? (I assume so from the stores you've mentioned.) I lived in D.C. and Arlington and worked in Bethesda for about six years before moving back west to my hometown in California.

  2. Thanks, Jeff! And welcome back to dancing. I'm sure your solicitation to join Dancers Anonymous won't be far behind. :-)

    Yes, I'm in the DC metro area. I'm just getting the blog going, and haven't done much in the way of linking to other beginning/returning dancer blogs yet. That'll come in time.


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