Wednesday, November 16, 2005

Nicest Dance Teachers on Earth

There are two sisters who run a dance school. They are both extremely talented and actaully the sweetest people on earth! No, really, they are incredibly sincere and would literally give you the shirts off their backs if you were in need. You don't meet many people like that and when you do, you are obligated, under the rules of the human race, to acknowledge that sincere, nonmalicious, kind and giving people actually exist. I didn't really believe it, at first, and then I watched them interact with people for a year. Unbelievably giving. Never two-faced or insincere. Never .... can you believe that? It's true.

We stopped by to see them yesterday to let them know about my daughter's latest adventures in dance. It was great to see them both and hear what their school and kids were up to. This was the school that my daughter attended in her last year of dance before turning 18. And, guess what ...... they just hired a voice teacher so they could add voice to their regular weekly dance classes ..... these ladies really know the business of dance!

Friday, November 11, 2005

Another dance pic

This is a pic from her jazz solo. Although you can't really see it clearly, I made both of these costumes and I'm very proud!

My daughter dancing

This is my daughter one year ago, doing a layout in her modern solo.

I'm really impressed with the voice teacher!

She had her second lesson in voice. The voice teacher records each class so she can take the tape home and repeat the lesson and practice for the next week. I don't stay for the class, but I did hear her practice today. Wow, what a great class!!!! The entire class is packed full of vocal excercises to build the voice. I do hear a lot of improvement, even in one week. The last 15 minutes is devoted to a audition song. They haven't chosen a song yet, but he has some really intelligent choices for next week. I like what I hear!!!

Thursday, November 10, 2005

You know what this is about.

Yes, another dance school, another rant. I shouldn't even have to title the topics anymore because each paragraph seems to be the same thing. My complaining about, yet another, teacher or school. This time we tried out a new place. This school is a 'professional' ballet school located in a nearby city. It runs the dance program for a local university and has a VERY good reputation. With that said ..... we will never attend classes at this reputable school again! What a let down. Granted, it was a 7:30 pm class for ages 15 and up to adult. Not one student was stretched, not one student could extend past a 90 degrees (and 90 is a generous description). Every student fell out of turns.... all of them. The teacher did not know how to choreograph safe moves (no linking steps). I was in fear for my daughter's legs and ankles. Leaping .... well, lets say hopping .... didn't go well for them either. Techno music from the seventies ..... enough said.

Monday, November 07, 2005

Singing Lessons - Books for Vocals

The vocal coach gave my daughter some great tips. He said that when you audition for musical theater (which he has performed in on Broadway and off), you will have to sing your audition piece in the key that the musical is in and that plain old piano music isn't always in the key that you need it to be in. He recommended the series of books The Singer's Musical Theatre Anthology which comes in different singing styles such as Tenor, soprano, etc. We haven't purchased the specific book yet, but when we do, I'll write about it.

Sunday, November 06, 2005

Rude, Rude Dance Teachers!

O.K. I'm going to rant, yet again, about dance teachers .... believe me, there are plenty of dance teachers I adore. It's just that those teachers run a class as it should be .... there's nothing to rant about, because the are simply exceptional people and teachers. But, after my story, I'm sure you'll agree...... My daughter had to hit a ballet class with real people. She's been doing David Howard video classes and just needed to take a class with a real teacher and real dancers. So, we went to the professional ballet school she attended last year. Well the place was shook up last year and the ballet mistress left and, well, new people have taken over. Still, exceptional instructors ...... except for one....... Get this, in the middle of ballet barre, the instructor who choreographs the Nutcracker for the weekend rehearsals comes in ..... with her three year old. We all know that three year olds are full of energy and run everywhere and get into everything we don't want them to get into. This three year old was no different.... full of energy. So, the ballet instructor, is giving this incredible sophisticated and packed with knowledge class and ..... the visiting ballet instructor .... gives her kid a TAMBORINE!!!!!!!!! A three year old with a tamborine in the middle of the classroom, during ballet barre..... (feeling my rant yet?). She made the stupid little comments that most horrible parents make when they know their kid is disturbing other people "now play quietly little, Johnny." and she also pulled him into the hallway, every once in a while so he could continue his tamborine playing in the hallway .... as if the teacher and dancers couldn't hear him play by the door. hmmmmm. Then she just left him...... all alone. And of course, being the typical three year old, he wandered back in with all the dancers and sat in the middle of the classroom for .... about ten minutes as she sat in the lobby (where I was sitting watching this horror) talking with the members of the board and who appeared to be her father. I could hear that the boy was in the classroom and that he was, indeed, becoming very skilled on the tamborine. After a while she finally went in and took the tambroine away..... well he cried.... so she gave it back to him and GRABBED A TAMBORINE HERSELF .... SO THAT SHE COULD JOIN HIM IN PLAYING!!!!!!!!!! (FEELING MY RANT YET???????) At this point, I got up and walked out into the hallway and stayed there. You may be saying "Why didn't you say something?" Well, the answer is simple. I have spent my daughter's entire life clearly saying something and she asked me to let her handle everything herself now. So I let her handle it. How rude some people can be. If you have kids, please don't be this rude.

Cover Up Fat Dancers

I think it's fine that fat girls want to dance recreationally. If you're going to dance and you have a choice of what to wear, please (and I'm pleading with you here), please don't wear two piece dance costumes and costumes with no back. I attended a competition yesterday and there was a good combination of dancers, thin, fat, short, tall. The thin girls had long sleeves and closed front and back dresses....the fat girls wore short, backless and two piece costumes. Now come on ladies! I don't want to see your four inches hanging over your pants and jiggling when you dance. Really....I don't. Save the skin dresses for those who can wear them.

Thursday, November 03, 2005

First Private Voice Lesson Today

Just got back from her first private voice lesson. Excellent teachers. Husband and wife team who actually perform in theater ... often. Learned a lot. Can't wait until next week!

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Kareoke Backing Response Question

We did look at the Kareoke Backing option. However, do you know if the backing instrumentals are instruments or techno music. If I were to purchase something like that, I'd want the instrumentals to be good enough to use on stage eventually, if needed. I know some performers who buy performance tracks of their song.