January 24, 2006

Passion

“You’re making it look too easy.”

“Get more into it.”

“You’re being too pretty.”

“Stop being pretty.”

These are the notes (that’s dancer speak for “corrections”) that have plagued me my entire life. (I blame it squarely on my ballet upbringing, but whatever.)

My sister puts it like this:
“Selena,” she says, “You need to get a fire in your belly when you dance.”

What?? Why? I thought pretty was good?!?!

Well apparently, not so much in these days of contemporary dance.

Anyway, today, Lamar, our guest choreographer for the next few days, commented on not just me, but all of us; about how we don’t look like we’re trying, or even that we’re enjoying ourselves.

(In our defense, it’s hard to really feel ‘into’ a piece you run at least 10 times a day every single run, but he’s right, really….)

“Remember that Broadway show you saw when you were little? Remember how those dancers made you feel?” he asked us all. “You thought, ‘That’s where I want to be. I want to do THAT.’ Well, make ME feel like that NOW. Own the stage, let it go, let me see the passion, let me SEE that you love to dance.”

So we did.

And he’s right. Something flipped, something clicked. He said we were right there, we were great. And even more than that, he was very complimentary of the girls. “You four danced as a unit. You were all dancing as one.” (That’s pretty awesome for us… and I think the friendships growing have helped…)

I now feel like I understand what everyone has been saying to me my whole life. I mean, I’ve understood it all along, but for some reason, today something clicked.

I feel like I’ve been dancing in the back half of my body for a while. Like I haven’t reached my full potential artistically or emotionally.

And that’s an exciting feeling.

To know that I have something to grow into, something more than what I am now, something to work on, something to achieve….

“There’s a very fine line between being great and being a legend,” a very wise person told me tonight. “All you have to do is cross it.”

Where’s your line?

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