Sunday, February 1, 2015

Ballet Double Header

I spent a week in the Frozen North (aka Ottawa, Ontario, Canada), during which I attended NO ballet classes. I did look, but when my initial searches came up empty I let it go. Turns out I wouldn't have had time or energy anyway. I did get to class this past Tuesday, which went well. Yesterday I had other stuff to do, so I went to class today.

Apparently I haven't been to a Sunday Beginner II class in a while, because when the instructor walked around greeting new students, she stopped in front of me and jokingly asked my name too. I swear it hasn't been that long!

I noted several interesting things during class. The first was that during the first barre exercise the instructor told one of the students that she wasn't ready for this class, and could stay and observe if she wanted but she really needed to be in the Beginner I class that followed. It was done encouragingly and semi-privately, but still... Ouch! I guess I've been taking Beginner II or higher for long enough that I don't really think of it as difficult anymore. That's not to say I don't have something to learn in every class, but it was eye-opening. I don't think I've ever seen a student bounced out of class before.

Another thing I noted is that more women are wearing pointe shoes for barre, and some in center, even though this school does not offer adult pointe classes. It's instructor's discretion whether to allow it, and another student in this class was asked to switch to soft slippers until the instructor got to know her better. Again, quietly done, but still an Ouch.

I've been thinking about going back to my old routine of 3-4 classes a week, and that would mean going to Advanced Beginner classes again. For some reason this idea seems a bit scary, especially since the Thursday evening class is reputed to be a bit harder than the Sunday afternoon class. I felt pretty good at the end of Beginner II, so I took a spot at the barre in Advanced Beginner. No, I didn't get kicked out. I made more mistakes and got more corrections in AB than in B2, but nothing embarrassing. And in what I suspect is intended as encouragement, the instructor mentioned to everyone that some of us in AB were taking their second class of the day. That wasn't necessary, but I think it's her way of telling me I should be in this class more often. Maybe she has a point.

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