Saturday, June 17, 2017

The Big Dance Recital Post


Last Sunday, the girls danced in their sixth recital.  Admittedly, when I registered them for a preschool dance class, I did so with a slightly selfish intent.  I'd always wanted to dance but hadn't had the opportunity.  They did enjoy dancing though and my hope was that at least one of them would stick to it.  Dance and gymnastics in this area are very popular with the younger set - preschoolers, kindergartners.  We've watched the class sizes shrink and shift as more kids have jumped ship for sports or other activities.

Our dance studio has two recitals - one for the younger kids and one for the older kids.  There's a full dress rehearsal on Saturday and the recital is on Sunday.  You basically dedicate almost your entire weekend to it, but that dress rehearsal is so very helpful.  This year, we had multiple costume changes and the rehearsal let me see what worked and what didn't.  The recital is broken down into two acts and each class performs one dance per act.  So, for each class, you have two different dances.  All three girls were in the same ballet and tap classes this year.  In addition, Allie took jazz and Emily was in hip hop.

Act I was calm until halfway through when Allie had about six minutes in which to change from jazz to ballet.  That wasn't really too bad.   After ballet, all three girls had three minutes to change into their tap costumes.  That was crazy.  Their tap, ballet and jazz costumes had clasps around the neck which they couldn't seem to master by themselves.  Their friends were having trouble too.  Speaking of friends, it was so awesome having their friends help out, tying tap shoes and handing them costumes.  There was only one hectic moment during Act II when we had two songs between tap and ballet.  I think that was the moment I decided my outfit choice wasn't such a practical one as I ran from the auditorium to the backstage area.  The recital takes place in one of the local schools and as with most schools around here, there really isn't much in the way of air conditioning.  It was in the high 80s on Saturday, and Sunday was the first day of a heat wave with temperatures over 90.  It was hot.  At one point, Anna said, "I'm so hot and I haven't even danced yet."


Photos and videos of the recital are not permitted, but we are allowed free range during dress rehearsal.  I actually prefer this because you can relax and be in the moment during the recital and not have to worry about capturing it.  You also don't have to worry about the person in front of you blocking your view with an iPad.

I think in the past I've thought they didn't have all the stage lights on during rehearsal.  This year, I realized the lights are just not that good.  There's a row of bright fluorescent lights at the back of the stage while the front has traditional stage lighting.  This leads to the back of the stage being too bright.  The front of the stage is lit just right but the middle is all shadowy.

These are all photos from the rehearsal.  Yes, I know there aren't as many of Anna as there are of Emily and Allie.  Emily and Allie were each in a third class, which means I had more opportunities to photograph them.  Also, Anna told me I was only allowed to take four photos of her.  Ah, yeah, sure.  I was right up against the stage so she could easily see me and I didn't want to stress her out.  Rich was there too and he took video - she couldn't escape that!

Emily, hip hop


Allie, jazz






Left to right, Anna - Emily - Allie, ballet



Left to right, Anna - Emily, tap



Allie, jazz

Emily in the lead, tap


Left to right, Allie - Emily


Front to back (or right to left), Anna - Allie - Emily, ballet

Same as above


Emily, Allie and Anna are in the back row


Left to right, Allie - Anna - Emily


I had wanted to take portraits on recital day before we left the house and I usually take some backstage shots, etc.  Well, this was the only portrait I took and I was too busy running back and forth from the auditorium to the backstage area for much of anything else.  Oh, well.

 I've learned so much the past few years in terms of organizing and how to quickly change costumes.  I had intended to include that all here but I'm so late in posting this, I'll have to share it later.



Anonymous said...

Could Anna's objection to photos be due to photophobia from the flash? I know that was one of the shunt malfunction signs that I was told to look for with my son.

Bree at Clarity Defined said...

Always love your recital post - hope they had a great time! Quick changes are always crazy, but the adrenaline is insane and the show goes by so fast.

Your girls' teachers picked great costumes!!

Sarah said...

Anon - Interesting point. I didn't use flash though - natural light photography. She does it all the time - it's a control thing. Plus, she likes to give me a hard time. ;)

Thanks, Bree! They had a blast.

Chantel said...

I am pretty lucky, they do not expect parents to help with costume changes in Claudia's recital. (We have 3, but the entire studio performs in all 3 except the little kids. They perform in one or two and they use those dancers to go between the older dancers to give them time to change. They have assigned volunteers back stage for the 3 recitals. Parents CAN help out if they want, but not required. I prefer not, I like watching way too much. (they have a special quick change area for costume changes with only 2 or 3 songs between). She has 3 costume changes but will increase to more next year... will be more interesting if I decide to volunteer as she gets older.. Like you, we can take pics during rehearsal which I love. Rehearsal day is one of my fave.

Anonymous said...

Your girls are gorgeous!
Donna, NY

Tinkerbellemommy said...

Let me guess...the pink costume was for a a Michael Jackson song? My DD did a MJ number this year too, but didn't have the glove, and we all said they should have lol. Beautiful dancers, my DD loved their costumes. :) Our studio does 2 shows also, and each class has several volunteer moms to help with costume changes. People are good about signing up for one show, and watching the other, so there's no crazy run to backstage. BTDT with another studio, it does make for a stressful day,and I've only had one girl at the time to worry about.

Sarah said...

The MJ gloves were HUGE. Another mom and I volunteered to sew them all down (there were only 10 girls in the class) and they were still flying off their hands - so they ended up wearing hair elastics around their wrists to keep the gloves on.

Macchiatto said...

So many great photos!! I did dance as a kid and miss that world. I hoped Will and Alex would get into it but that hasn't worked out. ;) (Though if I could find a hiphop class I think they'd both enjoy that!)
Also, thank you for labeling who's who. :) Trying to see if I can notice little differences ...