About Me

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Wednesday afternoon

The air smells springtime fresh and the sun is shining.  Now for some flowers...coming home from a nice ballet class in Printer's Row, I feel energized and ready for the gym.  I was talking to the teacher after class about my alignment and having used the Reformer yesterday at the gym and he agreed that it is good to do other things besides ballet, to shape my body and muscles.  I liked his class, near the end he said, life is hard, you pay to come here and for one hour of the day you should feel happy.  Dancing is hard, but it makes you think positive when you hold your head up, present your arms, and really extend your legs from the hip.  Ballet is all in the hips, he said, and you have to contract and rotate in the hips before you can use the legs.  Not the opposite, where you tendu and then squeeze your middle at the end.

There was a young boy in class who looked very elegant and strong.  He just came from YAGP in New York, the teacher said.  Another young girl from the suburbs was there, too, who had nice arms and was very ladylike.  And my old Russian non-dancer friend who wants to learn ballet and still is not experienced enough in movements, but attending class regularly is the cure for that, which she has been doing.  So, it was a good group, although having only 4 people in class puts you on the spot and I could see the teacher really scrutinizing me.  Look in the mirror and pretend you are someone else is what I should do, I thought, remembering my afternoon teacher's words.

I took my puppy, Yasir, to the park where he played with some bigger dogs, although I have to watch him.  One dog in particular kept jumping on him and so Yasir kept falling on his back and the owner didn't even do anything.  That's why you have to watch it, the trainer told me, and not let your dog be another dog's experiment.  Always better to be conservative, never mind if people think you are "unfriendly."  But he did meet a kindly Golden Retriever and some smaller dogs and had fun.  Later at night, after my swim (now I feel great), he played with some Chihuahuas...
Class:
Barre:
1. 2x demi-plie with full port de bras, en croix.
2. Tendu to 4th, press through foot in plie; en croix.
3. Degages 4x with piques; en croix.
4. Ronde jambes with balancoire.
5. Fondus to releve and tombe back and forth, front and back. Tendu grand plie side, turn to barre, pique attitude, extend to arabesque.
6. Battu with ronde jambe en l'air.
7. Frappes en croix; doubles side, front, back.
8. Grand battements 2x slow, 4x fast, en croix.
9. Face barre and do releves on one leg (also, before barre we did tendus facing barre)
Center:
1. Adagio: developpe croise devant, developpe efface and ecarte.  Promenade in attitude, extend to arabesque.
2. Tendus front, back, glissade 2x, chasse forward, pirouette.
3. Balance, balance with extended sweeping arms, plque attitude promenade.
4. Jumps: 1st, 2nd, 2nd with beats.
5. Glissade assemble both sides, jete jete, chasse pas de bourre grand jete, faille, ronde jambe to pose.
6. Fast pique turns.
Corrections:
In the pique turns, you must lift the working leg to passe immediately.  Use the arms in definite positions.  Don't sacrifice being lyrical for being sharp.  Sometimes you have to dance sharply because it trains your muscles better so you respond to pirouettes immediately instead of taking forever to do a movement and you are not really in any kind of place with your body, but just hanging around.  Use your head, look under or beyond your arms; extend everything.  Yes, this is what the Pilates teacher said, that I must extend my limbs out of my joints...

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