New Year of Dance

Its been a busy few months and quite a journey. I’m now officially a dance major at FSU and diving straight into my classes and pieces for the next couple of months. I’m on a fast track to achieving a minor in art history and, if things schedule well with classes, I’ll be set to graduate in the fall of 2013. This is all thanks to a great deal of work I put into myself last semester. I spent a great deal of time at the gym toning up and trying to lose the weight I gained in my extended off season. I also familiarized myself with the dance building by regularly attending rehearsals for the 3 pieces I was chosen to participate in. Unfortunately, I didn’t get to perform in “Days of Dance” last semester as a non major. On a technicality of not being in enough technique classes at school for the semester, I was not allowed to take the stage. I took it in stride and kept my head held in high spirits to show the faculty that I could be professional and that I truly deserved to be in the program for the following semester. I guess it worked.

This semester has already taken off at full speed. I have a full course load of dance classes ahead of me as well as 4 different pieces that I am participating in. Some days have proven to be more challenging than others when I get to school at 9am and dance until 930pm that night. All the while I might take 10-15 minute breaks in between classes and rehearsals. Lunch is about 40mins long but some days I stay after class to work on the things I need improve on and shorten my break to maybe 20min or so. I’m already working twice as hard here than I ever did when I was in full swing at Santa Fe and its not even February. Is it weird that I love it? Maybe I’m just a little crazy but the harder I work and the sorer my body becomes, the happier I get. My pounds are already shedding fast and my muscle tone is returning to my legs. The next step is to add some weightlifting to my regime to give myself an extra edge in the dance room too.

I’m so happy to be challenged physically and the great thing is that I’m also being challenged intellectually as well. I’m being introduced to many different modern philosophies and choreographic movement right now. My mind is swimming with ideas on how to perceive and rationalize my art form. Its fantastic. The great thing is that I’m not just learning steps in my pieces, I’m also actively participating in the choreographic process and contributing to the final product. Another place where I have an outlet is in my choreography class. Its part improvisation and part choreography and all fun for me. I plan to write a few blogs about some of my experiences there as well. My cypher mixtape project is also steadily moving forward as I have already choreographed to four different songs with completely different feels. The movement lays dormant in my video choreography files and also on my camera waiting for some people to set it on. Once that happens, part two of my project can take flight with video production. My last creative outlet for this semester includes an undergraduate research project that I am applying for at the end of this month. The thesis of which is to take a look at the current state of hip hop choreography in relation to the regional geographic culture of hip hop from which it originates in the United States. I’ll be using the youtube generation of choreographers as my primary research source.

Thinking about all my projects in school this semester gets me pretty pumped. I hope I can stay enthusiastic as the semester continues. My modern professor Tim Glenn told me that is one of the most important things to keep as the stress piles on. Hopefully, when the dust settles I can look back and see the progress I’ve made as a dancer. I think that’s pretty good advice.