What have I become ?
When i first started writing this post Facebook has been reminding me of The Ballet Retreat as the August Bank Holiday weekend is the high spot of the TBR year, the three day retreat at Northern Ballet in Leeds.
Why is the August TBR the high spot of the year for the #TBRFamily ?
- It's 3 days
- We usually have the entire Northern Ballet Building to ourselves
- It's been when there are planned guest teachers
but this isn't a post about TBR and how fabulous it is... Other than it's pretty needless to say I'm missing you all #TBFamily.
This post is called 'What have I become?' and that is what it is about
people, their identity and interests evolve over time.
I'm me, I'm Nicola even though it took a while to realise that is who I am, and that is NOT changing.
TBR does a part to play in the journey of what have I become ... the first TBR i attended was August 2017, still hiding behind *that* mask, which was fairly clearly slipping by then, to the point that now quite a few of the #TBRFamily swear blind that Nicola was there.
Interestingly this isn't about identity in that sense though, more about identity as a Dancer, while I started to scratch the ballet itch at the back end of 2016, at that point it was one class a week, I'd no idea of what my progress and level was like compared to others / normal beyond my classmates and I'd not really thought about or considered exams or what my eventual aims were.
I came away from that first TBR enthused by meeting a fabulous bunch of people both the faculty and the other dancers and with the advice from David Kierce in my ears ' find another class , you'll progress so much quicker if you are dancing 2 or 3 times a week)
It took me a little while to find that second class with Lady Bay Ballet, then disaster! My original class in Lincoln lost it's slot in the timetable at the studios due to changing in teachers - fortunately my Ballet Buddies were able to provider a more than acceptable alternative with Hype in Sheffield, which pre Lockdown had extended to 3 classes on on Monday night- Pointe, Ballet and (to quote another trans ballerina friend) 'that rolling about on the floor guff' aka Contemporary (no names, no pack drill there)... then you know the rest I've written about it enough on here...
Lockdown led me to thinking, what actually was my aim with Ballet? Until now my aims had all been relatively simple, quick and fairly straightforward ... whether that was pirouettes, to perform in one piece in front of an audience, to get properly over my box en pointe, to get away from the barre en point and so on and so forth...
I'd briefly spoken with Christina before but her class timetable last year seemed to clash either with work or with other classes I was taking. then i saw she was looking for dancers for production to take place new Summer, so i thought i'd drop her another message about that and that lead to a conversation that started with what level was I dancing at currently and the topic of wanting to do Intermediate exam came up and the had I considered adding a private to my plans , or even combining both of those ideas as well as continuing to take the 'free work' classes I was taking before lock down struck and which were gearing up to re-start.
So not only did i find myself signing up for another production andperformance i fell down the rabbit hole even deeper, i'm not that dancer who has a textbook in her the ballet bag and little notebook which she scribbles correctiosn and technique tips into after class...
The thing is ... I wouldn't change this for the world
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