Photo Credit: Phil Wayes

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

First Rehearsal

"Dancers, when we start learning a dance, the first rehearsal or two is always a little tedious. I will need your patience and cooperation while I get everything organized."
"Thank you all so much for your patience. We got a lot done today."

...and so has been my mantra for every first-rehearsal since time immemorial (or thereabouts). I even joked to the Corelli Concerto dancers that "This is probably the third year in a row you guys have heard this spiel." It's true.

I started Corelli Concerto last night. Actually, to be fair, I started with the end of the piece, because I like to choreograph Quentin-Tarantino style. The beginning of the finale is "the complicated part"-- the first time the soloist, the corps, and the trio come together onstage. With three different entrances (one en masse), a lot of blocking and spacing details have to be worked out; strategically moving bodies in the space so that everybody fit just right and created just the right stage picture.... I'd say it's like playing chess; but I don't actually know how to play chess, so I won't.
At one point, I mumbled to myself "I didn't think it would be this complicated...oh, wait, no. I totally knew it would be this complicated."
But you know what? This complicated process of getting all entrances blocked on the same stage, dancing the right choreography with nobody slamming into each other/without a giant visual clusterbumble? We got that much done. In under an hour. Oh, yes, we sure did.

My dancers were all so patient. I thanked them for their patience at least Idon'tknowhowmany times while I was altering the same blocking for the third time/fiddling with the music/messing with blocking some more. They kept quiet, applied my hastily-blurted corrections, and worked on their choreography quietly if I was working with someone else. These kids, I tell ya-- I watch them grow as dancers all the time; and as their teacher, it makes me feel all glowy.

I left the studio in high spirits. I can normally tell what my mood is by how loudly I'm playing my music on the drive home-- and when I got in my car this morning, I just about blasted out my eardrums. In other words, we're off to a good start.

1 comment:

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