As dancers, we tend to love routines. Plie, tendu, degagge. Warm-up, progressions, combo. Pre-show rituals. Post-performance commemorations – mine was always a cheeseburger and Coke! Routines are necessary to our dance training and can make performances special. But in our daily lives, routines can easily become stifling. With my son rapidly approaching his first birthday, I … More The #Monthly Message: Find a Rhythm That Enhances Your Life, Not a Routine That Stifles It
The arrival of September officially marks the arrival of the back to school season. The start of a “new year” affords us the opportunity to create brand new communities in our classrooms and studios. So often, we are tempted to immediately jump into technique and choreography, but taking time for team-building exercises and community building … More My Favorite Introduction Games for Dance Classes
“Perfection is achieved, not when there is nothing more to add, but when there is nothing left to take away.” – Antoine de Saint-Exupery If there is one thing I’ve learned over my 15-ish years as a choreographer, it is that you can’t be is too precious about your work. My choreography mentor Sara Pearson once … More 10 Strategies for Editing Choreography
This particular blog series – “My Top 5 Skills Your Students Should Know” – was inspired by a question posed in a dance teachers’ group on Facebook a while back: What are the 5 skills that you think are most important for your students to learn? As I’ve written in the past, I initially struggled … More My Top 5 Social-Emotional Skills Your Students Should Develop
About a year ago (maybe more – time flies!), someone in a dance teachers’ group on Facebook posed an interesting question: What are the 5 skills that you think are most important for your students to learn? This was a particularly vexing topic for me, because I had a hard time even deciding what counts … More My Top 5 Movement Skills Your Students Should Master
On New Year’s Eve 2016, I set a goal of getting back into the studio on a regular basis, and ultimately back on stage. I got to work, taking ballet and modern classes, making connections with local dance companies, and reviving a duet for a performance in March 2017. Little did I know that two … More #TheMondayMessage: Celebrate Your Evolution!
This is the third and final entry in a series of posts on teaching ballet in a way that leads to more empowered students. For more on this topic, check out Part 1 and Part 2. What is an empowered dancer? In my opinion, students who are empowered are: Self-aware and self-reliant (physically, cognitively, and … More Empowering Our Ballet Students, Part 3
The holidays are, if nothing else, an excellent chance to practice your small talk. At annual get togethers with friends, family, family friends, and the like, the usual opening question goes something like, “So….How’ve you been?” Not a terribly original questions, and not one that is particularly easy to answer casually over cocktails, either. There … More The Year I Stop Glorifying Busy