So Stagey

Tap was cancelled last week but I actually didn’t mind because I was quite tired anyway, but at the same time it was a shame to not tap for two weeks. Actually, MOVE IT 2018 made up for it so I really only went one week without tapping!

This week our teacher is running a catch up class, so I’ll be going along to that tomorrow lunchtime, armed with new top and microfibre sweat towel, both bargains I picked up from Decathlon which has just opened nearby 🙂

Sooo glad I have a week off work next week! However, I will still be dancing. Not tap, as that class will be taking a break over Easter. Being the keen person that I am, I have only gone and signed up to take part in OMG So Stagey CATS WORKSHOP at Pineapple Studios! Cats is my favourite musical ever and I must have seen it at the theatre least 6 times. So when I got a newsletter through from Pineapple and saw that a recent cast member was running this workshop, I was like “I’M THERE!”

It’s next Sunday afternoon and I will fill you in on the goss afterwards. Not sure if we need to dress up…

Squeezed

Today I was back to the lunchtime tap class which I used to prefer for being smaller and calmer, but find I am increasingly stressed out by squeezing it all in during my (extended) lunch hour (changing, walk there, dance, walk back, shower, change, eat). On top of that, the college is renovating the entrance and reception area to make it more accessible, so you now have to walk round to the back of the building to the temporary reception area. Thankfully Studio C10 is easy enough to find from that location.

The class was bigger than usual, but that was nice in a way, less exposing! I wore my white Jason Samuels Smith shoes, fresh from the amazing weekend in Salford! I was complimented on them by a few classmates and our teacher. One of the guys in the class was wearing the same shoes, which was cool. I didn’t really want to be the standout with the expensive shoes 🙄

I would definitely say that last weekend’s tap festival gave me a bit more confidence today. Maybe it’s the shoes! No, I think as comfy as they are, Saturday’s bootcamp taught me some new steps and helped me go over old ones with extra tips. Amazing what you can pick up (excuse the pun) in a few hours!

Today we went over the basic time step, but as a few of us were already familiar, we got to do the double version (with flaps). I was paired up with the older theatre type lady (leg warmers and everything!) to go over it in a straight way and then a swung way, but she is clearly trained in the classic style rather than heel-heavy Rhythm Tap and the more modern stuff that’s going down these days and she kept telling me off for being turned out. But that’s how I like to do it! Then she was throwing in extra bits that she knows and that went way over my head. Kind of an unhelpful pairing I’m afraid to say. Anyway, I’ll keep doing my thing!

A couple of people are going to hire the studio straight after the class from next week for a practice session – great idea! Unfortunately I have to get back to work – boo!

“Tap is by the people, for the people”

Ever been unequally yoked in a dance class?

Renewed

Some dance-related post through the door!

But I’m not going to give in and buy anything because I’ve spent enough money lately and I have enough dancewear for what I’m doing at the moment. Rhythm tap really doesn’t require leotards or a lot of specialist stuff besides tap shoes and a smile 😀

This week I’m back to Thursday lunchtime tap class with a renewed vigour after a fantastic weekend of tap in Salford!

Get Organised

Before…

I was scrabbling about Tuesday evening trying to find my leggings and a long enough top to wear to tap class this week and it was obvious that my dancewear drawer was a mess. I haven’t really sorted it out or purged since moving house and I probably have too many tops and not enough bottoms, leggings especially.

So, how did I sort it out?

1. I got everything out of the drawer.

2. I refolded or rolled up each item of clothing and put it back apart from items I wasn’t enthusiastic about anymore (or were ill fitting). Rolling saves a lot of space.

3. I grabbed an empty shoe box and placed it in the drawer to section off a bit for dance tights, sports bras, foot thongs etc.

The result?

After!

Hopefully it will be easier to grab what I want next week 😀

Next I should invest in a couple more pairs of black leggings.

New year, New Vest

This evening I returned to Rhythm Tap level 2 at Morley College after almost a three month break. I was kind of nervous going back, but excited at the same time. 

As expected, it was a large class and plenty of familiar faces were there, people I’d been learning with from the beginning pretty much. Caught up with R, and another girl whose name I don’t know (can you ask after 2 years?). K wasn’t there, but as she works there, she might be continuing with the day classes.

Was the class as challenging as expected? Yes! It has become obvious to me that I just need a bit longer to process the step and then practice. The routine is pretty cool, but I do feel a bit like a fish out of water after being away in Ballet land, and although I enjoy it, part of me was like why am I putting myself through it? Ballet and tap are sooo different, and Rhythm Tap is probably harder still (plus the class is probably too big and I’m only doing 45mins a week). Although a tap teacher will tell you not to think about it, it really is a mental workout, whereas in Ballet I could get away with switching off and enjoying it if you know what I mean.  I want to get good at tap, and know all the basics properly, so I will see how these 5 weeks go before seriously thinking about doing ordinary 1-1.5 hour tap classes right from scratch, either as a supplement or instead of Rhythm tap for a term or so. 

On another note, we were down in the hot basement studio again and because works are being done on the building the windows were boarded up with the tiniest slither of air coming in! Arghhh 

Outfit alert

Ballet ‘n’ Beans

This evening I left work early to prepare myself for Ballet at City Lit…by stopping at Grind in Covent Garden to wake myself up with a coffee LOL.
Once I got to the college I layered up with black vest and smoky blue t-shirt, plus black leggings and cool netted socks with rose detail 🌹…

It was a full house this week so I was glad to get there early enough to get a space on the barre by the window because I always get too hot.

We ran through the usual exercises but with added content, creating longer sequences. It must have been the caffeine because I pretty much remembered everything! Well, apart from the retire-passe at the very end of the class. But you know how it is, you just style it out! 😉

My left knee gave me a bit of trouble again because I realised a while ago that it is weaker and I find it hard to keep that leg straight when doing, say, the grand battement exercise. Still, I really enjoyed the class tonight and really worked on my arms and hands this week. I think because I’ve been watching Strictly and loving the expression you get in Latin-style arms and fingers. I’ve never thought about putting that into my ballet practice before, but it has actually helped me to understand expression in the fingers a lot more, and placing. Obviously you don’t want to put the arms behind your shoulders when in second position, or have a straight arm in fifth, but I was able to apply the expression in the hands as we are doing a lot more port de bras than I’ve done before. Still, I mustn’t go crazy and exaggerate…

Image courtesy of Dancing with the Stars

So much fun –  looking forward to next week 🙂

Actually

I had a bad day at work and was hacked off and overwhelmed by the fact I’ve basically been left on my own in the office for most of the week while everyone else bogged off to a conference (held biennially)/took holiday/worked from home/were off sick… All at the same time! Okay, the person who was ill couldn’t help that, but apart from him,  there was no planning, communication or thought for cover. So I had a melt down and left the office 2 hours early. Left my dancewear under my desk and didn’t want to go back, so I missed the La La Land Tap Workshop. My head was (and still is) frazzled. Arghhh.

On the plus side (there’s ALWAYS a positive!) I stopped by Bloch in Covent Garden and tried on the new tap shoes designed by Chloe and Maud Arnold of the Syncopated Ladies! They didn’t have the black and white ones in my size in stock, so I tried the black ones for size. Chloe and Maud are over in the UK this week and were actually at the store yesterday talking about the shoe! I didn’t go because I’ve done a class with Maud in Brighton (remember Afro Funk? LOL) They are sooo comfortable and will be an easy transition from my current Bloch Sync tap shoes. They are going to be a Christmas present from my SO and his parents. Very excited to return to Rhythm Tap 2 in January wearing them!

Anyway, I’m going to rest this weekend.  And cuddle my cat.