Thursday Class: Split the Difference
Tonight was my first class back with Company B.
There were only 3 of us, the more advanced members of the class, so he taught to a fairly high standard. (I should say, he always teaches to a high standard, but in this case he also gave us fairly advanced material).
At the beginning of barre, I was worried I wouldn’t be up to hanging with the cool kids, since I’m still fresh back from my Off Season, but once we got into it, I felt fine. My body woke up and remembered that dancing is what it does, and after that everything went fairly smoothly.
I got my left split back today. That’s a huge improvement. I’d been having trouble recovering it after yoinking something in my hip at the July intensive, but a month off seems to have un-yoinked said something. Now the only thing making life difficult is a tight spot in the top of my right quadriceps, but it’s not preventing me from getting that split all the way down, just making it slower getting there. It’ll come.
So that’s another keen reminder of how sometimes it’s good to take some time off, let the body just recover.
In other news, I had developed a weird hait of fouette-ing out of my renverse, and I got that sorted tonight a well. I was, it turns out (har, har) turning (ha!) my renverse into a turn, which, as M. BeastMode reminds us whenever we do renverse in his classes, it patently isn’t. It’s just a fancy way to change the direction of your body, really.
Anyway, if you turn your renverse into a full turn, you wind up doing a crazy kind of fouette thing to face yourself back into the correct direction. That sort of defeats the whole point of the renverse, and while it looks cool, it almost certainly isn’t valid technique.
On the other hand, being able to float through a full rotation in renverse means you have the balance working, so there’s that?
So basically, renverse is a fancy pivot that takes you only halfway around your imaginary box (generally from one corner to its diagonal opposite) and not a turn. And it looks awesome.
We also drilled down on pas de bourree en tournant, which is one of those steps that, at this level, many of us have just been faking forever with varying degrees of success. CB pointed out that it’s helpful to think of the en tournant part as quarter-half-half, and mentioned that even our resident Russian-trained-in-actual-Russia ballerina (and, yes, I’m using that term in the technical sense) says you often wind up having to fudge it a little. So you might go quarter-half-half and then sort of pivot subtly in sus-sous, or whatevs.
Anyway, excepting one instance of my prodigious ability to do the should-be-impossibly-wrong turn, my turns were good today, as were most other things once my body woke up. So that was good.
I love Company B’s class, because he tends to give a slightly slower class (possibly because he legitimately has a full 90 minutes, whereas my other classes are nominally 75 minutes long, but generally run closer to 90 anyway), which allows more time to absorb the finicky little details.
Which is good, because finicky little details are, to some extent, the heart and soul of ballet, though of course they mean nothing if the technique underpinning them isn’t there. They are, however, what puts the finish on.
So that was class tonight.
I apologize for my lack of diacritical marks, by the way.I’m trying out a new Bluetooth keyboard and am too tired this evening to go back and add them after the fact. I suppose I could’ve just used HTML mode on this editor, but I didn’t think of it ’til just now.
Choreography Study Group tomorrow, Advanced Class on Saturdau, teaching on Sunday, back to Modern on Monday now that my car is back from its maintenance visit.
Also, I really quite love this little keyboard, even if I keep mistyping “keyboard” in various creative ways.