Our Saturday class met this weekend at the Atlanta Ballet Co. to see a live rehearsal of the upcoming Nutcracker performance. We were enchanted to watch the dances that are so familiar to us being performed by professionals. The music of Tchaicovsky rang through the air as we watched mesmerized by the performance.
We had a brief 15 minute “class” taught by Cindi Millardi who showed the girls many new movements. It was wonderful for the girls to speak with a ballerina with years of experience who shared with them her story of getting into ballet which inspired our students.
We want to thank our sponsor again for covering the cost of this visit and our upcoming holiday experience. We have video below to share our experience.
We want to thank all the parents who participated in organizing this Saturday visit and the wonderful lunch we had afterwards. I know this live preview of our holiday field trip to Atlanta for The Nutcracker was already of big interest to our students but now, seeing the rehearsal live, brought so much of it to life and the excitement built even further.
The special time with the ballerina enabled the girls to learn first hand what it takes to become a professional dancer. They heard about the long hours before and after school as well as the full time practice during summer months which is necessary to build the strength and skills necessary to become a professional.
One of the girls asked how she kept up her grades in school with such long practice hours. I think it was at that point, it became clear to most that professional ballet is a full time commitment. And while she didn’t say she ignored her studies, she explained that her commitment was to ballet first. And at times, she would have to make choices. She said she is a “B” average student and when choices arose for extra credit or more time one a school project, she would choose to do her very best on her work product but that extra time went into ballet not school projects.
I appreciated her candor. I think sometimes we let children think they need to be superheroes when in fact, knowing what you like best and where you want to excel is how to maximize your interests and performance potential.
The ballet steps show were challenging for most of the girls and showed them how much more strength and precision they will need to develop to move to the professional level.
This was time well-spent for children and adults. We had a wonderful day learning about ballet and getting a sneak preview of our holiday event. A great time was had by all!