You Can Feel it in the Air: On Falling in Love (with Dance)
On Falling in Love with Dance: A stream of consciousness/poem and collection of thoughts from watching ‘The Seasons Canon’ by Crystal Pite and choreographing in my room late at night.
From the first movement, the subtle beginnings of a sway I’m enthralled. A feeling I can’t quite put my finger on and so scribble it down in metaphors to savour.
Sometimes I feel it in my chest,
Light and shallow,
As I catch my breath.
Sometimes I feel it in my head,
this dizzying sensation,
lines and curves swirling, weaving their ways around my brain.
Sometimes I feel it in my cheeks,
corners of my mouth pricking, uncontrollably widening into a smile,
then relaxing, jaw dropping as I gasp,
Sometimes I feel it in my eyes,
a childlike wonder, opening, letting images reel in,
a glint or glisten as silky tears slip out.
Sometimes I feel it in my arms,
the goosebumps rising.
and occasionally I feel it in all of these,
a feeling that hits you like a wave, sweeping, submerging,
leaving you breathless
but at the same time it’s like something has been ignited,
a warm glow inside,
flitting under the skin,
and you there staring into beautiful flickering flames that shadows dance in.
And then you’re there,
in your university halls kitchen at half 11 on a Wednesday night,
nearly weeping but in a happy uplifted way,
to your flatmate,
trying to comprehend and convey this feeling that this piece of art has made you feel,
but instead all you can stifle is,
‘Isaac, I just love dance’
This is perhaps the feeling I’m so often searching for when I watch theatre, particularly dance theatre, this feeling of being utterly encapsulated and moved by exquisite movements. A sensation that lets you tap into a childlike wonder and something that feels so special yet almost fleeting. I guess there’s something really lovely about being able to experience something and see it as so visually beautiful that you are just stunned, provoking you to fall in love with it. I could analyse the piece itself and try explain what makes it so mesmerising. Perhaps its the fluidity and freedom in the way they move yet at the same time the precision or the patterns they create or emotions they convey but I think what perhaps is most important is this visceral reaction and how intense it can be.
I get up in the middle of the night sometimes,
just to move, to glide, dance around my room.
Movement and dance is perhaps one of my favourite things. The playfulness of dynamics, the fluidity it can achieve and when I move I can get lost in the music, in my surroundings, close my eyes and escape. With each turn, each spiral, intertwining myself deeper within this world I’m building or story I’m imagining.
Sometimes its peaceful and sometimes its sad, tragic or bittersweet. Sometimes the tension builds and rises as the music does. But always there’s that moment at the end. Where everything settles and the energy created begins dissipating and the emotion disintegrating, scattering and its here, here you can feel it in the air.
I realised a long time ago that I would never be good enough to do much with dance or be a dancer. I’m not sure if I even ever believed I could be in fact. Over the years I feel I’ve fallen in and out of love with dance. At times loving performing dance, sometimes hating it and getting tired of technique and the emotion behind it lacking and at others neglecting it.
Nevertheless, dance was perhaps my first love and, even though it’s not the same as it was it led me to second and perhaps now main love, theatre. Blending in with it to create something new and exciting to believe in. I think it’s now I understand more what dance means to me and the part it plays in my identity, or maybe I don’t. I’ve probably still a lot more to learn and discover.
I recently reread a similar blog post that I wrote last year about loving dance, a lot of it still remains true and it brought me back to why I love dance, simply. I think I need that sometimes, to pause and remember why I’m doing everything and rekindle the primary connection I have with it, rather than trying to constantly tick off things on a way to a career goal. To remember how it makes me happy and sometimes makes me feel just that little bit more alive. To just remember to dance.
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