A dancer’s NYC dream
Having gone through tedious audition processes this spring for both the Rockettes Summer Intensive and the Joffrey Ballet School, I was thrilled to receive acceptances to both. These acceptances meant I would be spending three weeks in New York City taking classes from seasoned professionals – every dancer’s dream!
During my first week, I rehearsed with girls 14 and older from around the world, learning the “Rockette technique” from current Radio City Rockettes. We learned a tap number to the tune of Singing in the Rain from the Rockettes’ spring and summer shows, as well as Wooden Soldiers and Sleigh Ride from their Radio City Christmas Spectacular. In addition to the performance pieces, we acquired new strength-training methods and nutritional advice from the Radio City trainers. At the end of the week, we performed these routines at New York University’s Skirball Center. After the show, I said my goodbyes to all the wonderful girls whom I met, along with my Rockette instructors.
That Sunday, my family dropped me off at the Pace University dorms, my new home for the next two weeks. I participated in the Joffrey musical theater program where I sang, danced and acted my way through the week, learning performance skills from current Broadway entertainers. At the conclusion of week one, we presented a number from Wicked taught by the current “Elphaba” on Broadway.
Week two, Spectrum, Joffrey’s Jazz and Contemporary Summer Intensive, started each morning with conditioning, followed by ballet, the foundation for any dancer with superb technique. My classes included street, commercial and theater jazz along with fusion and concert contemporary.
I felt pressure to perform perfectly, but my mom reminded me that this was an opportunity for learning and enjoyment. Although the teachers observing and correcting me included current Radio City Rockettes, prima ballerinas, Broadway stars and outstanding contemporary choreographers, their outgoing personalities eased my worries. The priceless information and friendships I took home with me eliminated any stress or first-day jitters. Now, I look forward to seeing my new friends next year and keeping up with them on Instagram!
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