Performances always remind me of the magic of dance. The theatre space is transformed. The lighting creates a haunting atmosphere. The dancers jump, jostle, shake for hours to keep their/our bodies in a state of pliability so that when the stage manager says "places" we're ready for whatever needs to happen. Hours and hours of work. Hours and hours of tech rehearsal. And that's just when we get into the theatre. But that's where the magic happens.
Everything comes together. And for a few suspended minutes, hours, the world is perfect and there are pieces of peace. Nothing else exists.
Cassie, from "A Chorus Line" had it right...
Here's the song from the original Broadway Cast. There are many fun versions to watch on youtube:
(Go ahead... play it in the background and keep reading!)
Here are a few pictures from tech rehearsal with the Nora Gibson Performance Project at Dance Place in DC.
Thanks so much to everyone at Dance Place for making our time there so magical!
Give me somebody to show.
Let me wake up in the morning to find
I have somewhere exciting to go..."
"To have something that I can believe in.
To have something to be.
Use me... Choose me.
God, I'm a dancer,
A dancer dances!
"Give me somebody to dance with.
Give me a place to fit in.
Help me return to the world of the living
By showing me how to begin.
"Play me the music.
Give me the chance to come through.
All I ever needed was the music, and the mirror,
And the chance to dance..."
Maybe Cassie's a little more dramatic than I am, but she gets the point across... and there's no denying those feelings!
Recently, Dance Advantage - http://danceadvantage.net/ ran a campaign, asking her readers "Why does dance matter?"
It blew up! I joined the facebook page and there were so many people, posting so many different things about why dance is important.
Here's the web link: http://whydancematters.org/
And the facebook page so you can read on your own: https://www.facebook.com/events/258561160920606/
Some of my favorites:
"Dance matters because it connects people" ~Elise Butler
"Muscle memory - of joy, care, sadness, surprise, pain, excitement, etc., etc., and on and on -- needs a way to be recounted. Our stories are not only in our head." ~Neil Ellis Orts
"Dance has no discrimination." ~Crystal Markham
"Dance saves inner city children that want to express themselves or escape reality through movement." ~Alexis Anderson
Dance matters because sharing the human experience matters. Performance allows us to do that.
Dance matters because we often need to be reminded of the beautiful things that exist in our world. We need the beautiful to combat the sad, the scary, and the violent. Dance is beauty.
During this time at Dance Place, I was reminded what it means to be beautiful. That's a powerful experience.