Today I had class at the PNB. They’re going well and I’m learning new things and new adjustments. She really caters to everyone and their needs. My ankle unfortunately decided to get all irritated still, so it’s not some fluke. Needs to be looked at for sure.

I met one of the other adult dancers, he’s from Spain! A wonderful guy and dancer. He’s been dancing the last 2 years. I just started talking his ear off! I’m excited to talk with him again next Thursday. Everyone who’s been dancing with this group for a while is reserved and not chatty and very stuck in their ways. I tried to go ahead of these two ladies at pique turns because I was faster I could move across the floor and be out of their way. NOPE. Even though I was in the prime spot to start they just put themselves in front of me to start first lol.

I’m super excited though! I just finished icing my ankle, but… I’M TYPING ON MY BRAND NEW MACBOOK AIR!! So much easier to communicate with and type on than my iMac downstairs which is troublesome sometimes to work on as it’s wedged between a wall and our cat tree. I hope I’ll be much more functional with this in writing blogs, updating my store, corresponding with certain clients etc. 

 

Well anyways, I just wanted to give a quick update on that for now! More SKD and PNB to come.

Monday at SKD

We had photo day the first day of camp. They just started a new tradition last year that the group photo will be wacky and fun. Last year we were all late to the memo but this year I decided to do Seahawks! One of my Dancer friends was from SF and a steadfast 49’ers fan. We were messaging each other all during the final Sea VS 49’ers game only for them to looooooooose. Hahahaha! I brought my Seahawks spirit to the camp and everyone appreciated it- and complimented me on my leotard 😀

10440909_815394635145510_4683242603667769691_nThe Baltogs leotard I’m wearing though is dyed and as I was sweating all day the blue leaked onto my pair of tights. So now I have blue tinted tights… awkward. My Dancer friend Stephanie was wearing the same leo that day but in the black and burgundy combination. It is a super flattering and comfortable leotard.

So after photos we started technique! I had Pedro Szalay who’s Hungarian but born in raised in Venezuela. He was wonderful! Great teacher, I think the only time I had him besides PDD. Unfortunately I don’t remember too much of his combinations or corrections, they were good though. I remember leaving the class on a positive note. So it was a good class and a good challenge. He’s very fun and he often makes me blush out of embarrassment. He’s very humorous and kind. Will kindly antagonize you to do your best. Very cool teacher and I LOVED working on his PDD piece. OH! I do remember that for the end of class we did a combination that was part of the Black Swan’s piece! So that was fun, chugging backwards in arabesque haha!

I do remember that I had to go pee right after class and during that time they read out the names of all those who had been assessed were re-directed into the classes for their variations. I had been upgraded to the 3b-4 class which is the most advanced. Last year I was in the 3a-3b. Variations were broken down to women and men. So I had GAVIN LARSEN! She started out in NYC where she studied, went to the PNB for a summer intensive where she was offered a contract! Even before she was finished with school. She wrapped up her performing career at the Oregon Ballet and is now a teacher adults and students alike in Oregon. You can take classes with her on Mondays during the summer, and I think it changes for the regular school year. I can not emphasize how much of a great teacher she is. If you are ever in the area and available to take classes with her I HIGHLY recommend it. She’s also SO adorable!

10487345_10203448741234830_698329597932290375_n

 

So women’s variation! We were doing Swanlake PDT variation. Everyone’s choreography is different, so there is no replication online I can show you. It started in 5th on relevé/pointe. Then you’d do 7 counts of coupé starting with the back foot. Like a really slow bourre turn. Then you’d roll down to tendu, sous sus, pdb, tendu opposite side, repeat. “Set” of 4. Then slow bourre turn again – so you do it like 4 times, then sauté arabesque, then run run into step sous sus. Roll down into tendu devant plié . Then passé arabesque and bourre backwards. repeat 3 more times but hold the arabesque at the last time and PDB. Then you do the bent foot trot back while doing fluffy army movements, then roll down big step into 5th, then roll down and slow move in a circle to reface the audience and assemble devant. Then it was plie retiere, retiere, ronde jambe, and repeat x 3, with the leg still out from ronde jambe sauté arabesque and move upstage tendu and pique, lame duck, pique, lame duck, chasse x 4 and pose. Hopefully that translates well. Err…

10384018_10152554465646369_5421938663649316482_n

I hadn’t done pointe for almost two weeks, so when I did do it en pointe I got a small blister and I totally twisted up my muscles on my left leg. I was also laughing after class because I realized I was wearing two different shoes. Same kind just different widths. I think that’s why I was having troubles with my blister.

Oh man. Then after lunch with had Repertory. I still was in the advance class and it wasn’t a really HARD piece, it was all bout timing and my body and mind were tired already and it was just a lot of quick movements and hops. Our piece was the peasants dance from returning from the fields in Giselle. Remember, I was sleep deprived and constantly waking up around 2-3 am.

After repertory we had a turn out workshop and I was so tired my legs were cramping as we tired to turn out more and more. UGH. I was so done for the day. We rapped up at 5pm. 

As short as the day sounds, it was one of the longer days. It was very difficult because you’re putting together two choreographies. While last year I was drowning in choreography, by the fall of last year I had practiced the three choreographies from the Summer Intensive and then I had Nutcracker in the winter and learning 5+ dances. SO I was prepared and it wasn’t so much of a struggle as last year. Day two over and out!

 

Quickie

IMG_5671

New skirts on sale in my etsy store!!! Six lonely skirts ready for a good home.

pinqcouture.etsy.com

I made an appointment with my Podiatrist for next Wednesday- I’m still going to ballet class this Thursday night ¬.¬;;

 

Tonight I hope to update more on my week at SKD. Thanks everyone 🙂

Os Trigonum

Sounds like a Harry potter spell. Unfortunately it’s not. It’s that little extra bone I’ve mentioned a few times or maybe not at all I can’t remember these days. It’s in my right ankle and as of Thursday night, causing me a lot of grief. It never had before and we tolerated each other in the past. I made sure to try and warm it up as much as possible, but lately it is so painful to point my foot, be in demi, do other things. Even after a bit of warming up it takes going through all of degages to finally feel a bit normal. I can then dance on normally in class, which is good. If it was continuing through class no doubt I would ultimately be debilitated. After class I was feeling good until a couple hours later it just hurt. By morning usually everything is right as rain.
This early morning though, while dreaming of doing ballet and pointing my foot, I guess I did so in my sleep and my ankle hurt so bad it literally sprang me awake with pain. It had been a long time since I’ve had that amount of pain awoken me like that. Not since a tightly wrapped sprained ankle I fell asleep with kinda thing.
It has me worried. I’ve been working diligently on my skill to become worth of a teaching position and now I have this bone that is really beginning to fight back.
The longer it stays and I dance on it, the more damage, pain, and suffering I’ll be in. The options are to ice and ib and observe it, but that’s the “casual” foot user. I have to irritate that bone every time I dance and it’s not liking me.
So I think Monday I’ll set up an appointment some time soon to see a doctor concerning it. I want a 2nd opinion as the Podiatrist I saw who x-rayed my foot for pointe and found it said that surgery was a possibility. The 2nd opinion is to see if they’ll torture me with boots and injections before thinking surgery is necessary. And I’m thinking yes, I probably want surgery. Just like Kristen of little bone big problem.
We’ll see what the future holds for me and my Os Trigonum. As of now he’s playing around with my nerves in my foot and lower leg and it’s not fun :/

Return to SKD : Sat/Sunday

Let’s start shall we? I know you’re all at the edge of your seating, waiting over a week for me to update. I took some time to recover from the intensity of it all. I also dove into my work for my etsy store too. I’ve been a little busy to say the least.

Saturday we arrived to Vancouver around 2:30/3pm? It was a bit of a journey. It was brilliantly sunny with heat beams streaming through storm clouds. We had a few moments along the highway where we nearly or did hydroplane because the amount of water just instantly pouring from the clouds. It was crazy- but as soon as we arrived into Vancouver, which is literally an exit or two away from the Columbia river that is the border between Washington and Oregon. Vancouver was balmy. I think it was about upper 70Fs or 80Fs.
If you don’t know, dancing in Seattle it’s common and comfortable to be dancing in upper 50/60Fs. My friend from Texas found our temps up here freezing, as 70s and 80s was mild for her. Yuck! All camp I felt like the eskimo of the pack, I didn’t ask how the Canadian’s felt, I should’ve. It was freaking HOT all week and miserable for me to dance in. I sweated as if a faucet wouldn’t turn off.

So Saturday (again)!! We did not dance this day, ahhh…no throwing objects please. Katie had RSVP’d for me (with out me knowing) for the dinner that evening. What else were we going to do that first night anyways- c’est la vie… I got to meet new faces, old faces, and see the new teachers. I did not get a chance to talk to them at this dining occasion. It was a lovely dinner and nice to chat with people. A lot of my favorite people from camp, who I am friends with on Fbook, weren’t arriving until late in the evening or until the following morning. It was a chatty night, but uneventful evening and everyone was ready for bed for the next day.

Sunday rolled around, after a horrible night trying to sleep in the room where we were still trying to figure out how to get the right temp. We were miserably hot and woke up for several hours, then finally went back to sleep briefly only to be awoken again in a couple hours. ROUGH- honestly it was like that all week. I would wake up around 2-3am and roll around for an hour or two, go back to sleep only to be woken up again to get ready for the day. Definitely added to my stress. Last year I enjoyed the free breakfast in the morning, but this year. Nothing was appetizing. It was horrible trying to choke anything down but I actually found myself most mornings not interested at all in eating a large breakfast. Previous year I made sure I had something otherwise I was dying after the first class.
I think with all the extra added classes this past year my body had learned a way to metabolize properly for the extra work load. I found myself skipping breakfast for a banana half a cliff bar and a coffee at the local coffee shop. Unthinkable to me last year. Really surprising to me this year. Lunch was the same, I’d eat half my sandwich and by the end of the week there was at least 3-4 left over lunches still in our room fridge because I just couldn’t eat more.
Sunday we strolled to the dance center, picked up our name badges, checked in, and settled in greeting old friends and introducing ourselves to new people. I started to realize the second time around felt like Sophomore year of HS! You still felt a little apprehensive about teachers and the week ahead. Yet you knew A LOT of people. It was so good to see people from last year. You really make great friends coming to these intensives. So many varying ages, places, professions, experiences etc. It’s amazing and you can delve in seamlessly with talk of dance.
The new comers were being evaluated and placed into their designated classes. Since I was a “second” year you stick with your original class level from last year and Heidi (the Director/Owner of SKD) will come in each class and evaluate you. See if you’ve changed in the last year.
We started off with EBAS, Elemental Body Alignment System. Something that was being researched and cultured in Virginia for Dancers and those in similar trades. It feels a little hinky and weird at first, several times your brain will go “what are you doing?!” Until you roll up after you finish the exercises and you find yourself elongated and aligned! It’s not a replacement for warm up, so a word to the wise warm up for 30 minutes before hand, and then do your EBAS. It’s very hard to explain EBAS, but as the website says, it’s a lot of anatomical/brain recognition of parts. So being able to manipulate your pelvis and other muscle groups to get the desired movement to awaken them and put in place your skeletal structure. It was mind-blowing to me, in a positive way.

After our introduction to EBAS we moved into our technique class. I got to work mostly with Danile Giesy all week, who also is the EBAS instructor. She was amazing and I appreciate her constantly drilling me. I was really happy this year for all the critique and attention I got. I don’t know how much more I could pull up my abdominals and it crossed my mind many times, “can you pull or cramp your abdominals?!” Danile added a lot of port de bras to balances. We did these arm cycles where you go from devant to derrier and continue to cycle until one arm reaches fifth and then the other follows. Try it- yea it’s hard. It was a pleasant challenge because I did a lot of stationary balances in class all year. This is what I had wanted last year. Recognition of my hard work and my passion to grow. All my teachers were very thorough this year on corrections and were not afraid to make me do corrections with repetition front and center while everyone watched. Example; in pirouettes we were working en dedahn turns, she had me practice in front of everyone on correcting from a solid fifth position, spotting, trying to get my foot immediately up to my knee and connecting it- no floating! I didn’t feel embarrassed or self conscious up there. Everyone was learning, no one was judging. With each repeat of what she wanted, and small adjustments the turns kept getting better and better. PROGRESS.
Technique I got a refresher in something my Mentor has always nagged us dancers about. Learning our positions. A lot of us didn’t utilize our brains when we practiced our positions in center. I knew most of them, still I am very shaky on them and should learn not only the balanchine ones, but the vaganova, and chechetti. While I’m at it probably RAD too. Not only their positions (which include arms), but arabesques and how they do turns. I’d love to learn the RAD method of turns. If you watch their dancers do pirouettes, they are SOLID and have magnificent effortless turns. Go check them out on youtube. I’ll wait… RIGHT?!
So after technique we had lunch followed by our alignment workshop. Which was interesting. I paired up with one of our most advanced younger male dancers. He’s a friend of mine on Fbook. We worked on recognizing areas of where we want feeling and how to tell our brain to manipulate that area while working another. Like when standing in retieré right leg. Your right side of your hip should be pushing down against your retieré, because in ballet we don’t make things easy- that’s cheating, While you’re using your hip to push down, your left shoulder should counter balance and pull you UP. This will allow you to elevé with ease to demi and if you’re in pointe shoes all the way up- maybe, depending on your strength. Then my friend and I got into a balancing competition. Since it was the end of the day I was cramping and he being a guy who has to have awesome long winded balances was blowing me away lol. Jealous!!
It was a short day, so after alignment we all went back to the hotel to clean up. We decided to all go out to dinner in Portland. Unfortunately the place we wanted to eat at was a two hour wait! So we walked up the street to another restaurant where they served Thai noodle soup- and it was so good! Also, while lovely out in the shade we started getting a little cold haha. It was such a lovely evening. We were walking back and decided the busy ice cream shop with the huge line sounds interesting. Devised a plan to go to their “short” line by buying a small quart of ice cream. As groups we decided on flavors, grabbed spoons and dug in! They had my favorite caramels there too, so I bought those to share and eat through the week. It was a wonderful summer moment lol. We were all full and bushed then, so we headed back for the night.