A couple of weeks ago, I woke up with the rise of the sun to get stretched and have a balanced breakfast — I had an audition to attend.
I’ve always wanted to be a part of Dance Corps, so I put on my dancing shoes and marched down to Myers with butterflies in my stomach.
Nervous dancers lined the floor stretching and filling out informational forms. We were each given a number that was to be pinned on our shirts.
I took my place in line — No. 18.
Women of each academic year, and even a few men, packed into the Black Box Theatre and warmed up.
Eventually, we were told that we were going to be given three different pieces of choreography and we’d have an allotted amount of time to practice and learn the choreography before performing it in groups of four in front of everyone.
Ariel Monserrate, an officer of Dance Corps, got our attention to learn the first piece of hip-hop choreography. I was absolutely floored. Her dance moves were quick, precise and incredibly difficult.
I panicked. There was no way that I could execute every quick, intricate body movement that she did.
However, the other dancers around me seemed to pick it up pretty quickly — probably because they had all been dancing since they were in diapers, and my last dance class was 11 years ago.
The other two pieces of choreography went the same way.
Sarah Wagner, another Dance Corps officer, choreographed a jazz piece, and during her performance I was in a trance.
It was a beautiful dance that flowed perfectly with the music. But I didn’t know the difference between a plie and a chasse.
The final piece of choreography was given to us by Monserrate, and it was a contemporary dance.
I think I just barely managed to get through that one as well.
Needless to say, my panicked and spastic dance moves did not earn me a spot on the team.
However, my experience was not in vain.
I’ve always been told that I’m a good dancer, although I haven’t had a ton of experience.
My body had seemed to move the right way to music, and I suppose I have some sense of rhythm, but the art of dancing is so much more than that.
Seeing those students dance firsthand was incredible.
I’m always astounded at the Dance Corps’ spring performance every year, but getting a more personal experience through try-outs really showed me the dedication those dancers have.
Dance is such a beautiful, rhythmic art form.
Most of these women have been dancing for the better part of their lives.
They’ve gone through extreme physical strain and have trained their minds and bodies to express the physical motion of music.
They come together to create these masterpieces of choreography that go from just a lone idea to a full, high-energy performance.
That was my immediate thought upon seeing Monserrate and Wagner dance.
So although I didn’t make the team, I still have immense appreciation for what these dancers do. If you haven’t seen Dance Corps perform before, I highly suggest you check out their spring show when that rolls around.
You’ll get to see hard work and perseverance put into motion and you won’t be disappointed.
Email Courtney Casey at firstname.lastname@example.org