Yesterday, I had to film myself doing some center work after ballet class so I could send it to a choreographer. Honestly, I was terrified. As dancers, we are so overly critical of ourselves and it is often hard to watch. I know some people who won’t watch any video footage of them dancing. In this case, I had no choice. It had to be done. So after class last night, I swallowed my pride and began to film some of my work.
Luckily, I had a great support system helping me. A good friend of mine came to help take over filming duties and a wonderful, inspiring teacher helped with coaching me. Before beginning, my teacher talked to me about how I need to know that I am capable of anything and how nothing can stop me from dancing.
She said, “It is time to forget about being so technical and just dance. You are a gorgeous ballerina and woman and you need to believe it. No matter what anyone else tells you, you have to believe in yourself and rise above it because the second you let other’s words or actions get to you, you will shut down. You can’t shut down. Now is your time to shine and dance.”
This really got to me. It’s true. We often worry so much about what others think about us, say to us, or act towards us that it causes us to shut down, but this can’t happen. What matters is that we all fulfill our potential each and every day. So with that bit of inspiration, I began to dance. We filmed adagio, pirouettes, petit allegro, and grand allegro. We took multiple takes of each combination to make sure I had a few options to choose from later on.
When I got home later that night, I uploaded the videos onto my computer and began to watch them. I have to admit, I cringed a bit, but it wasn’t so bad. It was interesting to watch the different takes and how with each correction I received, my dancing got stronger and freer. Watching myself also allowed me to see exactly what my teachers and coaches are always telling me. I saw when I need to plié, use more épaulement, use more power, hold my turnout, point my feet, and much more. After going through all of the footage, I chose the best takes and sent them on their way.
Through this experience I learned that sometimes we just need to do the things that scare us. Face reality. Now that I have watched this footage, I can go into class later today and apply what needs to be fixed in my dancing. I faced a fear and can now grow from it 🙂