It’s here! The new dance season has officially started at my home studio and it thrills me how great this year already is and how amazing it is going to be. I’m so excited for everything we are going to learn and improve upon in class, the multiple performance opportunities, and the challenge of upcoming summer intensive auditions. Here are some goals I’d like to share with you that I’m setting for myself, as well as a few lessons learned in class.
Actually (Faithfully) Keeping a Corrections Notebook:
Every year, I start out with a notebook ( A new one, of course, because those are the best kind, right?) and it usually is filled with scattered dates and a smattering of corrections. To be honest, I write in that notebook much more faithfully when I’m injured and am forced to sit still and listen. Yes, I’m fully aware, that it is shameful. This summer I realized how helpful it was having all those corrections in one place during the intensive and when I returned home. ( YES, I know..DUH!!) I can only imagine how much better off I would have been if I had kept up with my notebook during the course of the year. This is a list of reasons why I (you, too, maybe?) should keep a notebook faithfully this season:
- One can’t possibly retain every-single-correction/tip ever been given.
- Mind over body, yes it sounds cheesy, but seriously if you are thinking about corrections and dancing correctly then you have the ability to change your dancing.
- Good dancers don’t just work hard, they work smart. A smart dancer works correctly, implements corrections, researches and doesn’t over work by doing the same thing incorrectly repeatedly.
This Year I Want To Work On Perfecting The Basics:
Ballet is very similar to math. Everything has a formula for success, but you must be strong in the basics in order to execute things correctly. Personally, I wasted much time worrying about not being caught up with my age group because of my late start. Too much time has been spent, being fearful that succeeding at my somewhat far fetched, but achievable goal of being a professional ballet dancer was impossible. The truth is I am blessed with the necessary tools to succeed. I have wonderful teachers, hours of excellent instruction and class time, support from family and friends, a desire to improve and a will to work hard. Ballet takes time – period. It’s not something that one can magically wake up and be good at doing. However, through hard work and Providence, I firmly believe the dream can be achieved.
I Want to DANCE In Every Class:
“All that is important is this one moment in movement. Make the moment important, vital, and worth living. Do not let it slip away unnoticed and unused.” ― Martha Graham
In continuation of everything above, I want to stop living in worry of the future. God has a good plan for me! This year, in every class, I want to DANCE not only because I’m working on performance quality but because it is what I love doing. It’s such a gift being able to dance, to be able to work on cultivating and growing this skill. There is no point in going to class and doing the same thing every day till you perfect it, if you don’t LOVE it. It’s just going through the motions which is pretty tiring and boring. My desire is to make use of every moment I get to express myself through dance.
Setting Long Term And Short Term Goals:
As wonderful as dance is, let’s be honest…the pursuit of perfection can be overwhelming. No matter how hard one tries, we never reach that unattainable goal of perfection. But, we can set goals (in those tidy dance notebooks we are going to carry in our dance bags now 🙂 ). Many of my teachers this past week talked about this idea. Short term goals should be set before and thought about the entire class. The hard part is just choosing one or two. Long term goals are a culmination of those short term goals that we achieved. As dancers we have so many little things to think about and in order to succeed we must be organized in our every day lives.
Let me be perfectly clear, I have an extreme distaste for doing any form of exercise outside of dance. There, I said it. As a kid, I never liked running, or walking, or playing sports. Then at age 14 I decided I wanted to be a professional ballet dancer. Makes perfect sense, right? Although I’ve been repeatedly told this by EVERYONE, I finally – out of the blue – ( all by myself of course) decided that I need to cross train. This year, I’m begrudgingly determined to cross train in the mornings BECAUSE I LOVE DANCE and I want to reach my goal.
Excitement is In The Air:
- This year we are going to have a set class for two weeks and work on perfecting that class under the direction of my studio’s director, Miss Susan. I can’t wait to get started on these classes. I think we will improve and refine our technique so much because of her direction and instruction. Knowing there will be a lot of chances to fix my mistakes makes me really happy, too.
- My first performance opportunity of the season is coming up in November. I’m so looking forward to the memories that will be made and to getting back on stage.
- All students in the day program are going to have ballet academy homework. This is such an opportunity to grow to my knowledge of ballet history, terminology etc.
Over all, I’m so elated for this year! I feel that each new school year/dance is a fresh start. This year seems like it’s going to be filled with new possibilities, adventures, improvement, and great memories. Get ready, my dear readers, together we are going to go on many great escapades together. Some will be small while others will be quite large…well as large as they can be for a teenaged blogger. 🙂