Desire to Dance

February 17, 2009
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When I signed up for dance on high school registration day, I was living out the dreams of my eight-year-old self. I remember a time in Michigan when I had wanted to dance, even went to a nearby studio, but it never worked out. I also took a ballet class with my sister once, and I discontinued that as well. Dancing was always something that I wanted to do, but had never pursued, and when finally given the opportunity last year, I took it.

Dance class last year was not always fun. The first unit we did was ballet, and there were times when I had contemplated never dancing again. Technique in dance is not something easily picked up, and the teacher did not have time to help all of the students lacking in skill. To make things worse, my class had the largest amount of experienced dancers in it. The teacher gave us even more challenging things to do, and being surrounded by girls who executed the moves effortlessly did not help my dance confidence.

My favorite unit was jazz because of the lowered emphasis on technique. I had amazing flexibility, wonderful leaps, which were nothing short of remarkable for a girl with no experience. In the recital, when we performed a tap and jazz combination, I was not nervous about having an audience watch me, nor was I afraid that I would falter, I was most anxious to hear what Mom would say. I never was completely satisfied with my performance until I heard her praise.

The next day we went to a nearby dance studio, for information. Three months passed before I returned to register for classes. The first dance class at that studio I took was ballet, the last formal style I had taken while in Michigan. The teacher complimented me on my turnout, and told me of my possible potential. The next class I took was jazz, and my grand j't's were what guaranteed me a company audition. By the end of the week, I had a spot on the junior performance company, Teen Dance Line. I had never in my life auditioned for anything successfully in my entire life. For four years I had not participated in any extra-curricular activities.

Looking back, I now realize why I may not have succeeded in my attempts to dance before. I had no reason to. My success in dance at the time would have been pointless; ultimately, it would not have benefited me. If I had continued with ballet, by now I'm sure I would have become bored with it. Or I might spend the rest of my life aspiring to be something that I never would have gotten. Rather than dance, I have spent these past few years building up desire. Desire to amount to something more than I could possibly dream of. Desire to do something different. Desire to have a talent. I have an immense amount of desire, and thankfully, I have found the outlet of dance.

To dance is to be out of yourself. Larger, more beautiful, more powerful. ~Agnes De Mille

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