The Nutcracker 2018 second weekend.

Another Nutcracker season has come and gone.

The second week of shows wasn’t without it’s quirks, but the quirks are the things that make it more memorable.

Our second weekend is done with a live orchestra, causing some tempo changes and unexpected differences in tone. This year all the dancers as a whole seemed to be aware and really listening to the music rather than going with the motions their used to in the timing we have at the studio. I was pretty impressed.

Another one of the party parents was out this Sunday, so we had to pull one of the company girls to fill in at the literal last minute. I was glad when I saw who it was because I knew she could handle the sudden new thing being handed to her. She and I switched husbands so that she could have me to sort of watch for timing and stuff since the party parent that was gone was near the front. I actually messed up a few times, not knowing if I was in front or behind on things, but we got it figured out with minimal notice of imperfections.

The party girls were super fun, and we carried on the tradition of the year before of making up dances to do during the intro music. (I’m sure that music has a more technical term, but my brain is failing me at the moment.) they absolutely loved it, and honestly it helped me feel centered. I do well with specifics and tradition and consistency, so this made it feel like we were doing something good and productive while we waited instead of getting inside our own heads and getting anxious.

We had quite a few dancers that were new to our company this year, and having them was an absolute joy. They are all so very talented and kind and have fitted right in with the rest of the crowd. I was very glad to see such seemingly seamless transitions for them, and love getting to see them backstage and getting to watch them dance. Change is never easy, but I’m so happy to have them with us.

A couple of little moments I love and want to remember:

  • The way the dancers run off the stage, out of breath, just to gather themselves and go right back out the other wing
  • The little cherub skipping with her dad backstage after her part, saying how much fun she had.
  • Hearing the audience react to the scene you’re in
  • The little conversations that happen in the scene, whether it’s to inform them of a movement or change, or just saying things to stay in character.
  • The nutcracker hand off and how Drosselmeyer gives me a secret thumbs up after every time.
  • Seeing my students as cherubs and angels and taking pictures with them. (And the hugs they give me when they see me.)
  • Watching my friends side stage as they dance
  • Seeing the older dancers take the time to talk to the younger dancers, and seeing the younger dancers eyes light up with dreams of who they want to be.
  • Dressing room hilarity
  • Getting to hang out with my fellow party parents.

So many other things I’m sure, and I may update this list as I remember them. I’m so grateful to have the opportunity to be a part of this company. It’s something I never even dreamed would be possible when I set out on my first ballet classes. It was beyond anything I ever could even dream, and here I am living it. I’m under the tutelage of a legend who has absolutely incredible stories to tell, among some of the best people I know. I try not to take even a moment of this dream life for granted.

I saw one of my students from last year in target after the show. It made me happy. I just had to throw that out there.

My phone is still rather broken so I’m only able to take photos with the selfie camera, so i only really got selfies with my tiny babies and a few friends. (Which, ya know, not gonna post in such a public place.)

I’ll hopefully have all the recital dances choreographed over the break (while I’m dog sitting for a family that has far more open space than I do) and well start cracking down on it when we get back.

I have one private lesson student right now, and working with her is making me so excited to see the progress in these kids. I love seeing them excited about ballet and seeing their dedication and determination to better themselves in it. What a wonderful habit to have.


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