The center of attention

I’ll be the first to admit, my confidence level has never really been that high as an adult recreational dancer.

I seek out the barre on the side in the classroom where most of my classes are just to avoid the mirror.

I depend too much on watching my neighbor when trying to do the step in a combination, and at times, to stay on the music.

Mr. O, our artistic director and one of my main teachers, senses it and will challenge me in class.

Such was the case during Wednesday’s class.

There were 10 or us. We were to divide into groups of five with two in front, one in the center and two in back.

I began to walk to my usual back. One reason is etiquette. There are two other guys and I generally go with them. And at times, I go in the back just to be as hidden as a I can during a combination in which it’s just me and company wonders.

Nothing like being at the absolute bottom of the class talent-level wise.

In this open class, there are two teenage girls who are really close to my level.

My plan was thwarted.

Nothing like being singled out.

I was to be in the center of the group with the company girls.

Just to work on my confidence.

It was a slow, graceful, adagio combination. Walk three steps, pique twice, then pique arabesque turn (pique attitude the second time we did the combination), tonbe pas de bouree pirouette (repeat).

I actually got praise the second time we did the combination, but it was a bit scary when I was told to look in the mirror to see “my line.”

Mr. O is always quick to point out that I’m a better dancer than I think I am. And if I’m showing any lack of confidence in doing steps in a combination he knows that I know … there I times when I’m made to do it solo.

That’s scary in itself. But maybe it proves I’m not always the helpless cause I think I am.

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