Back in Ballet

I missed all the summer ballet classes for a variety of reasons (primarily due to the root canal and sinus infection), but was able to start fresh with the fall session tonight.

None of the other women who were in my class last time are in it this time-- there are now three different levels (beginner, intermediate, and advanced) for adults, so they are all in the higher levels (in the spring, beginner and intermediate were together). I'm in class with two high school girls, neither of whom has ever taken a dance class of any kind before. So I've gone from being the one who had to be positioned strategically behind the more advanced students so I could follow them to the one in the front of the barre that the others look to for guidance. Yikes!

I thought at least one of the other girls, H, would take the beginner class again, but I guess not. I feel a little like a flunkie. But I wasn't really allowed to move my arms much in the spring, because I was so uncoordinated it was all I could do to focus on just getting the feet and legs right. It is my goal this semester to be able to add the correct arm movements. Then maybe in the spring I can move along to the intermediate class. Although I'm kind of liking my current class already-- the girls are really cute. They're so full of energy, just spinning around randomly between exercises, etc., it's kind of inspiring. The last class had more older women, and you could hear all our joints creaking during the warm-ups and stretches, so this is totally opposite. And because these girls haven't had any previous ballet training, I can see that the instructor, S, is going to take the time to explain everything thoroughly (she spent quite a bit of class time today in lecture and demonstration). It's a little dull for me for the parts I already know (the feet), but I really appreciate the full instruction for the arms. Last semester, since my classmates were more advanced, S didn't slow down the class for me to catch up, I was just supposed to follow along the best I could, and I just never could jump right in with all the arm movements. But now hopefully S will add them in slowly and systematically, and I'll be able to pick them up.

I'm looking forward to advancing my ballet skills. I've been at this for about a year now (I think I started either last September or October), and my turnout is more natural, and my "high diagonal" stance also feels more natural. Those are two things I work on whenever I'm stuck just standing around in line somewhere. I think I'm going to treat myself to another leotard, and a new pair of ballet shoes. I really need the new shoes, mine are nine years old, and the leather seems mere days away from wearing through under my big toe. The new leotard will be just for fun.