This past week was the first regular week of classes at BRT in Albuquerque.
For me, it was an interesting pair of classes.
Because of my now-mostly day job, my class choices were a Ballet I class on Wednesday night and Ballet II on Thursday.
The Ballet I class was pretty interesting. I hadn’t been going to it in the summer. Didn’t know who the teacher would be.
The same anxieties always hit with that first class.
The regular teacher wasn’t there. The guy who taught was the guy who has been teaching the Ballet II class that I had been going to during the summer.
There were five of us, and it was a bit of an unusual mix. Of the five, only two were women. I’ve never been in a class where we (the guys) so outnumbered the girls (I have been in classes were the numbers were almost even).
It wasn’t one of my better classes.
I’ll be honest, I always have a hard time finding the right tempo when it comes to a slower class. And this class wasn’t quite a beginner class, and the teacher didn’t quite teach it as one.
I was a bit sloppy and off count.
That is until grande allegro (big jumps) time. Sautee, fi-e, glissade, assemble’ (repeat), pique, chasse, tour jete, tonbe pas de bouree, saute chat is a combination I knew pretty well and managed to earn praise for.
Made me feel a whole lot better.
Night 2: Ballet 2 went a lot better.
Same teacher taught. Everything we did was technically a whole lot difficult than the night before. My timing was better. Technique was better.
I’ll be honest, I rely too much on my neighbors, and since my neighbors were better, I was able to step up my game.
I even managed to make it through petite allegro a lot better than I normally do. My glissades didn’t quite suck as bad as they normally do.
I also think it helped that I was more in my comfort zone.
My four other classmates were women. Why am I more in a comfort zone in a class like that?
When there are other guys in the room, I tend to get a little more competitive, unless they are good friends of mine who are company wonders like two of my close dancer friends back home.
And the two other guys are a couple of decades younger than me. Can’t figure out why I wanted to be so competitive, other than the fact that neither seems to understand spacing, which did annoy me a bit (but I didn’t complain).
Now for the title of this blog entry.
BRT has auditions on Saturday for Nutcracker and its spring performance of Beauty and the Beast.
If you follow my blog, you know I love performing. And I’ve been in at least one ballet a year, and most of the time two, since 2007.
And I was in three in what turned out to be my final year of performing with HBC before packing it up and moving from Alabama to New Mexico.
BRT has an audition for adults for character roles (and company if I were about 20 years younger and three times as good as I am). With HBC, I was pretty much always drafted, something that happens when you are a guy with the shortage of men in ballet.
A few days ago, I was for sure I was going to audition (which would have been a first even though I’ve danced in classes that were audition classes).
But I’m still adjusting to life in New Mexico. So is my daughter.
Even though there is a Ballet I class on Saturday morning (a tough one to make since my ballet commute is about 70 miles), I’ve opted to use Saturday as a sleep-in day, and a day of recreation day with my daughter, who is still not quite as connected to life and friends here in the Land of Enchantment.
So, for the first time since 2007, I believe I’ll be sitting this performance season out.
Which for me is kind of difficult.
It will be really hard reading about other people doing parts with HBC that were solely mine for the past few years.
But I’m getting older.
Maybe it’s time for me to just enjoy class and learn to enjoy performances from the audience.