One for the treble, Two for the bass

Often times before class starts at Broadway Dance Center, I’ll look around the waiting room and see back in a corner, behind various stretching legs, a tiny, bent old man.
And I’ll think, “Holy Crap! Is that old dude waiting for this class? I mean, I guess dance is for everyone?”
The other class will exit, we’ll all enter, including this crumpled up old grasshopper. I watch, more and more amazed, his slow progess over the threshold, through the door, and then a quick right turn and there he is, sitting behind the piano.
A-Ha!
That makes so much more sense!
I just want to tell the world how awesome it is to have live piano in ballet class. I wanna shout it from the rooftops! Or, just shout it from this blog!
Live piano really gives a stronger sense of where the accent is supposed to be in each exercise because the music is being played specifically for us, for that very exercise.
Class progresses so much faster when the instructor’s attention isn’t directed at the Mystery Box of Sounds. Poor Smirnoff, won’t hit fast-forward for fear he will end up deep with-in unknown musical territory.
My theory is that each piano player has an understanding of just how much silliness each ballet teacher will tolerate.
Which is why in Highball’s class we get no-nonsense classical, in Dubonnet’s class there are faint hints of “Prima Donna” from Phantom of the Opera during reverénce, and in Saketini’s class we’re outright blasted with “Money Money Money” and “S.O.S” and other ABBA at the barre. You’d think he’d bust out “Dancing Queen”, but maybe we haven’t earned it yet.
I think I may have caught the tiniest snippet of “Bad Romance” too.
Two other things are cool about live piano.
Thing #1, a lot of old musicians are receiving paychecks.
Thing #2, it’s good for dancers to be made to interact with other disciplines. Most of the kids in these classes are young, and I remember from way back in the day in college how easy it is for theater tech students to fall into a dislike of acting students, and vice versa, when really we all need each other. Even if acting students really are a pain in the butt.

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About adultbeginner

Had my first ballet class Ever at the advanced age of thirty-two. Yikes.
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One Response to One for the treble, Two for the bass

  1. asher says:

    Hahaha — just stumbled onto this particular post at a particular apropos moment.

    Last night, about halfway through barre, I found myself whistling along to the music, and of course immediately wondered *why* on earth I suddenly had the urge to whistle in ballet class of all places.

    And then it dawned on me: the music! It was the music! …And the music was “Always Look On The Bright Side of Life” from Monty Python’s -Life of Brian.- All while we were doing this super-confusing frappe combo.

    And I thought, “Well played, Claire. Well played.”

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