Back to the Barre

June 4, 2009 - 3:14pm -- swingbug

The performance went well. It was fun, even. Yes, I have photos. No, I’m not ready to post them yet. (Shawn took over 2000 at dress rehearsal, so we’re still picking through them in a big way.)

A flu bug ripped through the cast, as per usual. It was running rampant at home as well. Luke got it Thursday night with a stunning display of gestational pyrotechnics, but was pretty much whole and happy by Saturday night when I left for my first performance. Thank the dancing gods, I didn’t catch it until Sunday night, many hours after the curtains were closed and we’d all gone home.

Funny turn of phrase, isn’t it? That you “catch” a flu? I didn’t catch anything. That bugger got me and not the other way around. I didn’t catch up to it until Tuesday morning when my immune system got a good punch in and sent it sailing out of the house. Don’t let the door hit you in the ass on the way out.

Tuesday was bright and sunny and I felt like a human being again. I ventured back to class Tuesday night. The air at the studio is lighter after a performance passes. No less sticky, humid, and smelling of dirty ballerina, but a littler easier somehow.

“You’re dancing for you today,” my instructor says while we start pleés at the barre. “No one else is watching.”

That’s not entirely true, I think. We’re always dancing for her as well. And to certain extent, for each other.

Everybody’s in a good mood. Our instruction jokes with us as she makes corrections. She’s shelved the classical stuff for the day and we’re dancing to Elton John, still loudly singing the lyrics to “Yellow Brick Road” after she’s paused the stereo. I watch my fellow dancers go across the floor in pairs and trios and can’t help the grin on my face. The subtle way Nicole catches the music or the way Kari and I can never decide when to start if we’re standing next to each other. The way that Megan beams whenever she dances. I really love these people. All of them. And funny, many of them, I don’t know that much about. I know which girls are in high school but not what grade. I know this one has a cat but I don’t know where she works. I know which ones are married but would be hard-pressed to come up with spouse names. But I know how they dance. That tells you more about a person than you’d think.

It’s often the best part of my day walking through those studio doors. It’s nice to remember that, now that the pressure is off. This is fun.

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