Sunday, July 19, 2015

Level Up

I decided the best way to kick off my week long vacation was to take the class one level up for the first time on Saturday morning before going to the airport (where I wrote this, as my flight had been very delayed).

I had a lot of fun!  The barre was actually very doable. The tempo was obviously a lot faster and the combinations longer and more complex, but it was okay!  It is interesting how the combinations are given in this higher level, with the teacher not really demonstrating all of it, just giving a lot of it verbally.  I did hold my own, and didn’t really mess up anything too egregiously here.  I did notice (and got corrected on) a few times when my technique got sloppy (knees got a bit floppy) because I was so focused on getting the combination right.  I can’t remember a ton of the barre combinations because it just kept on moving.  Oh, balances actually went pretty well!  Arabesque ones, and attitude ones, and passé ones.  I felt very pulled up.

I was really nervous about centre, but parts of it okay, even good.  I wrote down some of the things we did (but couldn’t remember it all), so here is what I remembber:

This is one combination that went well. Start in croissé plié arms to demi second, plié arms from first through second, plié sous-sus, close, developpé front (opposite arm up), developpé other leg to second arabesque, developpé effacé with downstage leg, developpé effacé up stage leg, fondu pas de bourre, tendu back leg, plié in fourth to a pirouette en dehors. I will say, I feel like I really rocked this except for the turn.  My extensions have been great lately and I can now hold a développé to the side with the foot at shoulder height even in center with good alignment.  The turns were obviously tricky for me.  I got all the way around, but the position in them was pretty hideous and the landings were horribly sloppy.

 Another combination was two balancés to a piqué arabesque, failli, tombé pas de bouree, pirouette en dehors from fourth, repeat except ending with a pirouette en dedans.  Again, everything was fine except for the turns.

Petit allegro was an unmitigated disaster.  The combination was glissade jeté on each side, glissade assemblé on each side.  Which I can do….on my on...slowly.  Once it was at tempo with music, it was really, really bad.  I felt so tangled in my feet, it was horribllleeeee.  Like, couldn’t remember to close back in the glissade to be set up for the next thing.  Ugh.  ::hides face in shame::.

Across the floor was also not great.  Two sauté arabesque, saute passés, one more sauté arabesque, glissade, pas de chat.  Actually, everything was fine except for the glissade, which I always sort of had to pause and think about.  I really need to work on these.

Despite those hiccups, I didn’t feel like I didn’t belong.  My teacher was wonderfully supportive, saying to me during plies, what a way to start your Saturday morning, graduating a level!  And she also said that it wasn’t going to be perfect, but it is never perfect, even when you’re a pro, you just deal with it better!  It was also fun because there is a guy who I see in class quite often who has been taking ballet for about the same time as me (a little less than a year), and we support each other throughout class with little comments / faces, which makes it all more fun and bearable.


  1. Oh, that class sounds so fun! Some of the combinations sound similar to the ones in my class, and that adagio in center combinations sounds great.
    That is so true about how in the next level they don't really demonstrate combinations like in beginner class. In mine they do at times, but not as a rule.
    That petite allegro gets me every time :(

    1. Yes it's fun that it's just challenging enough without being discouraging! Your summer class seems to be going well :)

      I hate petit allegro soooo much. With the heat of a thousand suns.