Sunday, November 3, 2013


I got two of 'em today. One at the barre and one in the center. Color me bouncy.

I don't remember what I was doing at the barre, but in the center we were doing a simple combination at a rather fast speed (fast for us, at least). Starting from fifth effacé: glissade, jeté, coupé with a turn to the corner, tombé, pas de bourrée turning back to fifth effacé and repeat. The first pass through wasn't great, and our instructor suggested avoiding a pause after the jeté, "bouncing" straight into the coupé instead. Somehow I ended up in the front of our group of three, and with nothing to distract me I just launched into it. With the bounce the timing worked so much better, and I found myself keeping to the beat with no difficulty. It felt like dancing rather than a a gym exercise, which is still a rare feeling. About half way across the floor the instructor called my name in delight and said something like "that's wonderful!" Wow! That was going to the right, my strong side. Going left it wasn't quite as good, but still OK.

We did another simple combination, this one with turns: starting in "B+" the back foot comes forward into tombé, pas de bourrée, chassé to tendu derrière, plié in fourth, pirouette en dehor to fifth, chassé to tendu derrière, plié to fourth, pirouette en dehor to a lunge, and repeat. Trying again to heed all the advice on turns I focused more on position than rotation, and was excited when the turn seemed to happen as if by magic. In fact, I was kicking myself for not attempting a double on the last turn of the series to the right. To the left, though, my right leg was uncooperative and I barely made it around with an extra little hop even on my best attempt. Still, I think the form was better and the rotation will come when my leg is happier.

After class I had a chat with one of the other regulars about compliments. She admitted she's one of the "zombie dancers", as our instructor calls them, who is so totally focused internally that she appears to be staring blankly into space. She was on the last repetition of one of the combos when the instructor called her name and said "that's good!" Hearing her name, through, broke her concentration and caused an immediate screw-up. She said she never understands anything an instructor says while she's dancing, be it compliment or correction. While I sympathize with her, I'm glad that I don't have quite that much difficulty with it.

I have tickets to see the Washington Ballet's production of Giselle tonight. I'm going to go dig up my copy of "101 Greatest Ballets" and read up on it first.

1 comment:

  1. Ha, I just bought that book for $2 at the used book store. It's got some good stuff in it, but it has an awful lot of Balanchine works that NEVER get staged. I realize he wrote the thing but GEEZE.


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