But work has been terribly exciting over the last thirty-six hours. New folks and new projects, and the energy level on our floor has gone through the roof! I'm really enjoying getting to know the new singers, and there's a openness, an eagerness to the work that's amazing and totally refreshing. I'm digging it. BIG. TIME.
Today I got a visceral reminder of how integral inspiration is to my job. Our Studio Singers are working with SS, a prima ballerina in technique and poise and grace and experience and countless other aspects, but who is also totally down to earth and fun and approachable. (In other words, a colleague that I could totally be friends with - I heart her!) In the dance community her class would be approached with awe and reverence - such are her credentials. But we put her in a room with a group of young opera singers, many with no dance experience, who express discomfort and nervousness verbally, and sometimes quite loudly and goofily.
They loved her. And I'm pretty sure that she loved them right back.
She pushed them, worked them for two hours straight. By then end of class they were familiar with lots of movement vocabulary, had each fought through something that made them uncomfortable, and were going across the floor in totally respectable combinations. They did everything she asked without resistance, and looked awesome.
I sat and watched. Not thinking ahead, I wore a skirt (a comfy skirt, but nonetheless, a skirt) to class. I'm an administrator - these classes are not intended for me, and I was just there to ensure that everything ran smoothly.
But I really wanted to move. The eagerness, the warmth, the collaboration in the room was so compelling that it was amazingly difficult to sit as a spectator on the sidelines. To watch a fabulous dancer spend such concentrated time on folks who will never wear toe shoes? To see a group of singers hang on a dancer's every word? Inspiring seems like such a small, weak word for it...
As class ended, SS said that her favorite part of the class was a brief moment where she asked the singers to find the poetry in the movement. She noticed a marked difference in their physical attitude once she allowed them to think of class as more than a workout (which it was - I can vouch!), rather, as art.
I'm taking her lead this week. It may feel like something else: work, penance, purgatory or heaven. However it feels, I'm going to remind myself that it's art. It's art.
- Getting comfortable with discomfort.
- Friends. Have I mentioned that I LOVE summer???
- Opportunities. I'm totally crashing one (or more) of these classes!