Monday, April 19, 2010

Dance, Ballerina, Dance

Yesterday, my beautiful cousin Megan and her boyfriend Nate took me to my very first ballet, the American Ballet Theatre's performance of "Swan Lake."  To be absolutely honest, I was not looking forward to it.  My attention span is famously tiny, and I worried I would fall asleep during three hours of dancing.  I do like to experience things that my friends are passionate about, though, so I was excited to see ballet through Megan's eyes, since she is a retired professional ballerina.  I planned on pretending to be really enthralled by it, all the while thinking about my grocery list, plans for the summer and maybe my go-to time-waster of trying to remember all my cousins' names in birth and then alphabetical order.

It turned out that I absolutely loved it, no lie.

I just couldn't get over the grace of the dancers.  Every movement was so deliberate, and I couldn't imagine being that in control of every part of my body. The music was gorgeous and the way that the dancing was perfectly timed to the orchestra was amazing.  Everything was perfect, from the scenery to the costumes to the crazy lady I met in line for a taxi who complained bitterly about not remembering to hire a limo.  I seriously would go back in a heartbeat.

Dancing has never appealed to me in the same way singing does.  I like dancy parts of musicals, sure, but dialogue and plot and storyline have always been the draw.  I came away from "Swan Lake" with a new-found respect for the practice and effort that had to go into every moment of that performance.

I'm looking at my own clumsy body now with disdain, realizing how far away I am from the potential dancer that I undoubtedly could be, if only I had natural grace, long limbs and hours and hours to devote to the study of something in which I have no natural talent.

Then again, I am not exactly an amateur, having performed in a dance number on a little program called "The Oprah Winfrey Show." 


  1. I am really glad you enjoyed it. Thank you for joining us. I really like the way you described your new appreciation. Nate seemed to only find it worthy to note the weird plot and not the actual dancing. Ha ha.

  2. I've been so out of the loop that I am just now catching up on your last two weeks' worth of posts--argh. Anyway, I also hate forgetting to book a limo. And I too could have been a great ballerina, if not kicked out of ballet class at six years old. RESOUNDINGLY kicked out.

  3. Oh you need to write about that, my friend.