When I returned to ballet as an adult, I was delighted to discover the advantage that emotional maturity brings. As I approach 50, I feel that I’m artistically a stronger dancer now than I was at age sixteen. Understanding that there is simply no limit to how I can develop my artistry as an adult dancer is joyous! My physical limitations (some from old injuries, others from the aging process) have challenged me to find new pathways to cope with the demands of classical technique. It is an eternal process of learning which is addictive for me. My body is not as forgiving as it once was so I must be diligent with warming up and stretching down. The warmup process takes a lot longer than it used to! I do find freedom and pleasure in the fact that I’m no longer competing against other dancers, just myself.
Adult Ballet is my life-force, my oxygen. It has given me the means to remain connected to my greatest passion. It is my physical, emotional and mental health. It is love, frustration, reward and challenge, all in the space of 90 minutes. In this technology-driven world, I feel blessed that my relationship with adult ballet both requires and inspires creativity. It is my soul-food.
Allegro, allegro, allegro! My long limbs often led to the assumption that I was an “adage dancer” but it couldn’t have been further from the truth. In younger years, the constraints of adage were only tolerable because I knew the class would end on a high note (literally!) with a thrilling grand allegro. The feeling of powerful jumps pushing me higher and further was unbeatable. Although I can’t match the degree of elevation these days, I am still “flying on the inside”.
Given the love of flying expressed above, could I have been a pilot? Ahh…no. Although it’s practically impossible to imagine a life without teaching ballet, I may have moved toward a career in psychology or counselling. Mental and emotional wellbeing is so important and under constant threat with our overly-busy adult lives.
Perhaps it would be my ENAR; an odd-looking but effective little tool that is designed to ease muscular ailments. It sends an electric pulse through the skin to the muscle, increasing blood flow and promoting healing. It’s a strange sensation, much like pins and needles. I do think it makes a difference though.
I have a life outside of Elancé? Is this a trick question??? I am constantly trying to balance the demands of work and family. As a mum, my weekday mornings are preparing school lunches, ironing school uniforms, checking shoes are clean, driving my son to school….just like any other mum. Weekends that allow for family time are desperately precious. My wonderful husband and gorgeous son are my world.
I adore cooking and find it a wonderful way to unwind after a demanding day. Exploring new recipes, tastes and textures is really just another creative outlet for me. Food….I love food! I’m also an avid reader and can happily lose myself in a book shop for hours on end (you might find me in the cooking section!).
I LOVE listening to 80’s heavy metal music when I’m driving to work. I bet no-one saw that coming!
Dreams sometimes come true in the most unexpected ways! Have faith that failure can lead to opportunity and pain can lead to joy. You don’t have to fit the mould to be successful and happy.
Anywhere with a swim-up bar!