Expect the unexpected, that’s how I approached the return of ballet after a week’s absence.
Since company dancers make up the majority of the open classes I take in the mornings, I knew we weren’t in for an ordinary class. They were coming off a weekend performance, so I expected a laid back class, which is what we got for the first hour.
The guest artist who served as an emergency performer took over the last part of class. The last 30 minutes of class, we worked with partners. With only four guys in class, it was about like an assembly line. We rotated and worked with each girl, and the lone adult woman recreational dancer,
It was fun. But it was a refresher about how intimate working with a partner in ballet really is. No personal space! And of course, you worry about crazy things like “why didn’t I get a fresh mint, do I have enough deodorant on and am I sweating too much?”
It was simple stuff. Just a few turns. It made me realize how much I miss partnering class, the one thing I really wish I could work on enough to where I’m comfortable with it. Seriously, though, it helped my comfort zone to have at least one partner my age. But the girls were great and really amazing to work with.
Aside from the unexpected, my turns were pretty good for a return after an absence. I had a few double pirouettes that were as clean as I’ve done them in ages.
The night class, on the other hand, still continues to be a challenge. But I have goals to work toward in Dawn C.’s class, like getting the combinations down. My jetes were sloppy during petite allegro. And I struggled a bit with the pique turn-double A turn combination (one pique turn followed by four double As, which I can’t recall ever doing before I took her class).
Her class is my most difficult, but I enjoy it. Because most of the class was coming off a performance, we did the full 90 minutes to modern-rock-pop tunes (you haven’t lived until you’ve done ballet to Fallout Boy, Imagine Dragons, Flo-Rida and Katy Perry). Of course, it appears now the other male dancers have dropped out of that class, leaving me with just the company girls.
That makes it even more of a challenge, I think. But we do this thing called therapeutic barre, which feels so good. That alone would make the class worth going to.