I have written before about the value in dancers trying many different styles and classes. Experiencing and experimenting with a variety of teachers and choreographers can help make you a well rounded and versatile dancer. It also keeps you on your toes, (sorry, corny dance pun! Haa!) keeps your mind sharp, adaptable and helps you pick up the steps fast in class. But…
Always a but…
There is something to be said about finding the right people to work with on a regular basis. The teacher that explains thing in the perfect way for you. The choreographer whose sequences always feel completely natural to you. Maybe you will even find a mentor? If you are a dancer who needs a lot of demonstrating or a dancer who loves lots of directions and corrections…you want to train regularly with that person, or people, that provide you with what you want.
As a dance student I liked a class that went fast. I didn’t want or need much verbal explanation. I liked to just jump right in and try it. The mirror and I would just figure it out. Sometimes a good analogy can help. A way of thinking about a certain step…for example, when you are trying to balance in a releve, think about a string continuously pulling you up and keep pulling up and up…
Some dancers need to solidify their plan for the moves in their head first. Some dancers are all physical and want hands on adjustments. There is no right way or wrong way to study and practice dance. Dancing is a very personal experience. It is all about you. Your body. Your mind. Your expression.
At different points in your dance life you may also want different things from your teachers, choreographers and even fellow dancers. There are times when you want that comfort class where you know what the teacher wants before they even tell you. There are also times when you want to leave your comfort zone and try something really new.
When you come across your favourite classes and ideal teachers, you will just know. It will just feel right. You will never want to miss that class and you will always be excited and looking forward to going there. A good class and teacher will make you work hard…but they will also make you smile.
Is exhiliration too much to ask? Haa!
No. Not really.
A super dancified class with a great teacher can have you learning, laughing and loving every minute!!!!
In Sanskrit there is a word, “sangha”. It means community or association. It is usually used to describe a spiritual group of people who work on their lives together. Like minded individuals who want to work on the same goals.
I hope you all find your dance sangha.