St Patty's Day
Performed Friday night at the standing-room only monthly guild show-- lots of fabulous dancers made for a stellar evening. I received some flattering feedback on my performance to the classic Arabic love song, Enta Omri, which I've performed before, but not for for the guild. It's important to learn new dances, but I find it's also necessary to have a reliable repertoire. I've finally got about twenty full 3 to 5 song routines, solid horses of all different shape, size, color and temperament in my stable, which I can trot out at any short notice. Some require a little refreshing, obviously, like Enta Omri which has lots of juicy layers of sound, intricate rhythm changes, lovely melodic swirls and some awesome please-don't-miss-that-accent sections. But there are some songs I can perform without having heard in months. Never thought I'd have so much under my belt, but if you'd told me fifteen years ago I'd be teaching dance, I'd have died laughing.
On Saturday morning I taught my two hours. In addition to the usual drills and shimmies and undulations and isolations (use those muscles ladies), we're working on how to approach a full performance-length choreography format, complete with improvisation and veils. The song begins fast, so we can use some of the quick rhythmic motions, then it slows, so we can use the veils. After a few minutes of veilwork we discard our veils, and add a shimmy to our slow taqsim motions (or not). The ladies LOVE working on it-- I've never really done the "I dance, you follow" structure before, and we still spend a lot of time breaking down the individual motions, but they seem to really enjoy it. So many different people learn things in so many different ways. It's neat to see it happen.
In the afternoon I went with my girls Shell & Vicky to the assisted living home, where we did two group numbers, Shelle did a solo, and I did one solo & a veil dance. Good times, good times. The usual suspects were in their half-circle in the lunch room, ready for us when we arrived. The room was insanely hot due to the sunny weather, so we were panting by the time we finished our dance set. We read one of the resident's poetry (he's been asking us to come to his room and read it, which we must decline, but this time he had his book there with him, waiting), and it almost made me cry, it was both humble and encouraged, but I interpreted it as sad because it had nothing outside his daily existence, just get up, eat, bathe, sleep, sit in the sunshine. Ode to a cantaloupe takes on a whole new meaning when it's a life of physical restrictions and confinement, but then it is somebody's life. I have to think more about it.
I slept almost all day Sunday, except for doing laundry and taking a walk with S down at the butte, where we saw a nesting pair of bald eagles on the riverside side of the hill, and heard hundreds of little birds and saw thousands of cherry blossoms. The trillium are blooming. The sunlight played chase with high clouds. I kissed my smiling sweet blue-eyed man and he tasted like springtime.