As we all know, any sport is time consuming. In May, everything piles up; tests, sols, AP exams, sport season championships, upcoming job opportunity interviews, and all other crazy things. However, it is still important to go for practice so that you are caught up and have one less thing to stress about. In the ideal world, we would have time to do everything and still have time to sleep and be with friends, but that does not always happen. Most of the time, you would choose one or the other. My guideline is simple: if there is no game or peformance, go and have fun! Happy May!
Practice is sometimes annoying. I get it. You would rather be somewhere else, but it is important to think about the fact that your parents (or in some cases, you) paid money to be a part of this, missing practice does not benefit you, it is just adds to the stress that you might already have from school. So here is my guide to deciding if you should go to dance or skip.
If you are sick- do not go if it is contagious. If it is a stomachache or a headache, take some medications and go to avoid missing anything.
If you are injured- it is recommended that you go unless you are on bedrest. I personally would go but notify you instructor about what is going so that they know that you are going to sit out and watch or help the instructor with other paperwork. This shows that you are committed!
If there is an event- you should try to come for a part of practice and leave early or come late. In some cases, there is absolutely no way you can be in 10 places all at the same time. You should let your instructor know about a class before if this happens.
If you have an upcoming test or have something due- Now you need to ask yourself whether you are willing to go to practice and still have enough time to work. If that is a no, do not go but let someone in the class know. If that is a yes, or “I have a little bit of time” then go, you will be less stressed out about everything and you can have some fun.
March is the time to start studying for upcoming exams and SOLS. For people who play year-round sport, it is time for championship. For dance, it is the same way, we start preparing for our Annual Recital which is usually during late summer, but this year our instructor has signed us up for our first competition. Since December, we have been taught a dance for both the recital and the competition. It is a lot more complex compared to the choreography that we have done for last year’s annual recital. Due to my health, my doctor has told me that I can’t take on a lot of pressure from school and dance and that I have to commit to one until I can give my 100% to dance. However, I am really proud of the team who will be dancing, I know that it won’t be possible to get 1st place because it is our very first competitive performance, but we will improve!
Now, we are all procrastinators in some way. It may be from school work or simply just getting out of bed in the morning. For my dance group and I, it is choreographing a dance and making it look presentable. During practice, I admit, we are a mess, but on stage we are collected.
Have a reasonable deadline- if the song is four minutes long, do not expect it to be done within a week if you spend five minutes a day doing it and then constantly change the steps. It is important to give you and your group time to review and learn.
Take it slow- Not all of your group will get the steps immedietly. You must take it slow and teach it carefully and correctly, because if you get frustrated, your dance will not be performed the way you imagined.
Be open to opinions and ideas- You must remember to take input from everyone. If one person in the group states that they do not like a step, you should ask them if they have another option and once you agree with a choreography, you should be fine.
Communicate with the instructor- if you have an issue about the dancers or a step, talk to your dance teacher for her opinions and her options. You must get their approval before you proceed. As mentioned in step one, setting a deadline is important, but you should plan out everything before continuing.
Persist- work hard and make this dance worth it!
It is also good to know that things change, last minute things come up. Do not get frustrated because one day that person might be you.
It is shocking to most people when I tell them that I have exams in dance. It is not necessarily an exam, it is more like an evaluation that most dancers take every year.
Now, how do exams work?
Well, there are two parts: the actual dancing part, and the knowledge.
The dancing portion of the exam is basically you showing the skills you have learnt through a series of prayers and dances that your group has been working on. You typically perform this with your group who are in the same level as you. This part is treated exactly like a performance, the only exception is that you have to answer questions and you may redo a step if you messed up.
The knowledge part is like a test full of short answers. There are about seven options, you choose five and try to add as much detail as possible. There is no issue with this part, except the memorization.
It is said that the mind can fit five times as much as all of the information in wikipedia, but it is not easy. You create the essay and remember it and you have about three hours to write it on the paper.
The difference between an exam at school and an exam in dance is that you are allowed to speak to the people in your group during the exam, but you have to paraphrase so that you all do not end up with the same answer sheet.
Happy New Year´s to everyone! I hope all of you had a good and relaxing winter break.
This post will be about problems that some dancers face with accessories and the costume.
Maang Tikka- In Kathak, there is this type of jewelry that is called Maang Tikka. It is a piece of jewelry that is placed just under your hairline. The issue is that it is a loose piece which does not stay in place. About a year ago, my friend found out that using clear nail polish on the maang tikka before putting it on helps it stay still. I found this very useful while spinning. The problem with this was that it took sometime to remove the remaining nail polish off your hair and forehead.
Itchy Dress- I remember my first dance dress. It was not a good memory. This dress was red with silver leafs and the top was a beige color. It may sound nice, but it was itchy. Luckily we grew out of it and now we have a comfortable dress.
Ghungroos- The bells are required every time you dance. However, underneath your tights or leggings, it is important to wear some padding to make sure that you do not receive any marks. The marks hurt for a little bit but they are removed very quickly.
Make up- I hate wearing make- up especially while dancing, on stage I feel conscious that the lipstick or mascara is smudged or some other scenario. It is common to feel that way, but I dislike the feeling of sweat and makeup mixed up on my face.
Last but not least- hairstyle: my baby hairs always get in my eyes while spinning on stage. During practice, I generally keep my hair in a high ponytail, but no matter how short my hair is, it will always slap me in the face. My layers make it more painful.
This year was the 10th Annual Recital for Arpan Dance Academy, we were stressed out and it resulted in a very successful performance.
For us, at least. On stage, we are calm and collected, but backstage parents are scrambling to get makeup on kids,performers are practicing, kids are running around,props are lost, costumes are all over the place as well as shoes, parents are trying to shush their kids.
In other words, it is chaos.
Before the performance everyone is quiet and anxious. Our hands are sweaty from gripping our friend’s hands. We peek our heads from the side of the curtains to see any familiar faces. As they announce our names to perform, we smile at each other and it is almost as if we are saying “good luck”, but the words are unspoken.
All the stress has left our bodies as we enter the stage and make a promise to ourselves that this will be a good show.
We have all dealt with the situation where you are with a group of people who you barely know. You have three options: pretend to not notice them and go on your phone, make an excuse to leave the room, or you could just simply try to interact with them. It seems hard at first, but talking and getting to know your group helps you enjoy the activity more.
For me, I had two friends in my class and we all went to the same school, but one of my friends and
In dance, there are scenarios where you have to work together to choreograph song. That choreography done between friends will be a lot better than choreography done by strangers. Since preschool, our teachers always stressed the importance of team work.
We are encouraged to try things at a very young age to feel a spark to a particular thing. As an only child, my parents wanted me to try everything from karate to remembering prayers at an academy. My thought process as a five year old was to let my parents have the satisfaction of me trying new things, then bawl my eyes out and stop it. I eventually realized that I couldn’t sit at home and watch cartoons 24/7 so I started caring
My parents didn’t know about me secretly dancing in my bedroom to bollywood songs, but they did find out and decided to put me in a dance academy. I was with my friend so I felt a little comfortable. As years passed on we grew up but my friend and I were separated because I took a small break from dance.That was my mind set eight years ago when I started dance.
When I came back to the academy, I found a friend and we talked, today she is one of my best friends along with seven other girls. As I grew older and danced more, I realized that it is important to enjoy what you are doing and who you are doing it with.
You should not feel restricted to have a conversation with them just about the sport or event that you are preparing for. One of my friends told me that she was afraid that she would be the black sheep of the group because we had been dancing for years, but we all were on that boat sometime in our life. You could say when you try something you don’t have the fear of the sport itself, but more of the people who will be with you.