April 24, 2012

Jilted, Dead and Haunting - It's Showtime!

We started our spring show rehearsals last Friday - and not a day too soon, might I add. The performance is in five weeks, which unfortunately does not equal five weeks worth of rehersals. But then we would be dancing in some Fancy Company, and not in our dance school's spring recital. To be fair, more time was planned. We were supposed to start as early as February/March, but then there were circumstances which could not be helped. Still, better late than never. In addition to our regular classes (which are reserved for technique practice), we get to rehearse the choreography every Saturday for two hours, right until the final weekend of May when it's showtime. Am I excited? You bet!

This spring recital marks a sweet premiere for me. It's my first time in pointe shoes, on stage. After practicing pointe technique for approximately a year and half, I finally get to take my babies to the ball! The party lasts only for two and a half minutes (not men), but.. it's Giselle! The first ballet I ever saw performed live! I was twelve years old and thought it the most beautiful thing ever. And now I get to be one of the wilis [insert sigh of happiness]. Pointe-wise it's not a difficult piece, there are some bourrées couru/suivi, a few pas de bourrées and a nice set of piqués with battements double. I kind of wish there could have been a little more pointe technique, but I know what feels "easy" in class turns into a challenge on stage. What am I saying? It's Giselle, for crying out loud! Sigh..

There are many versions, and subtle differences especially in the port de bras - but this version below comes pretty close to ours. There are only eight of us, which lessens the corps de ballet effect somewhat, but it's a nice group to dance with. Our bit starts at 0:12 and ends at 2:50.

Oh, I should mention that this is not the only piece in which I get to perform.. But I tell you more about that in my next post! :)


  1. Congrats, Johanna! First performance en pointe is a huge step! I can attest that simpler is definitely better the first time attempting that. So exciting that you get to do a Giselle variation! Our recital is all original choreography, which is fun, but I'd love to perform a variation at some point in my life. Can't wait to hear more about the rehearsals and the performance!

    1. Thanks, Lorry :)

      Original choreo is very cool, and if it's done by your ABT, even better. You can be sure that it's both fun to dance and a great learning experience for you guys!

      But I also get what you said about performing variations. This time our choreo is not even modified, it's the real deal. Makes me feel like an actual ballet corps dancer. Even though it's only for a few minutes! :)

  2. Whooo! Merde to you, madam. I'm sure you'll do a lovely job! My recital is on Friday, and you're right-- what's easy in class becomes SOHARD on stage (as I learned at the dress rehearsal)! My own choreography, which is medium-easy suddenly becomes impossible on the stage. I couldn't keep my balance for my shaking legs! Wah! I hope to be able to overcome this in time for the show.

    Are you going to record your performance? Will we get to see you dance? :)

    1. This is Blondie, btw. I never understand why sometimes it makes my put my name, and why sometimes I'm logged in as various Google or Wordpress things. LOL silly internet. :)

    2. Hi Blondie / Joie :)

      Thanks for the merde - I'll be needing plenty of it! In class I feel very secure doing those steps, but on stage.. Suddenly the thought makes my feet tremble.. Think I will have to practice away from the mirror to feel my balance!

      It also helps to go through the entire dance in your mind - and always in a positive way. See yourself performing with the music and engaging with your audience, every step and move effortless and elegant..

      You will do great, remember that the audience wants you to do well and see you enjoy yourself! Merde to you!!!

      Our performance will be recorded, yes. But it's only for personal viewing. Maybe I'll ask someone to record bits from our rehearsals, maybe.. :)

  3. Who's the Myrtha/Giselle ;)

    1. We have neither, it's only us eight "wilis" dancing an excerpt from the wilis' entrance. Nothing more, nothing less :)


To That Special Ballet Teacher

To that special ballet teacher, who not only teaches you about technique, but helps build your confidence, nurtures your inner artist, ...