Sunday, March 6, 2011


On the VERY FIRST Day of the full schedule of classes and rehearsals, I had a near accident that I thought was going to make it my first and last day of the Conference!
I had been assigned 3 boys and 1 girl for that day's Showing. I was really happy, as I had just come off of 2 years of intense partnering myself (and doing choreography for pas de deux)...Basically, I was incorporating one of my newest (and I thought coolest) new moves that I had just premiered with my own partner a couple of months earlier...It involved the boy holding the girl's waist and turning her around. No big deal, you say? Yes, but mine had a twist. I wanted Boy "A" to turn the girl 3/4 of the way and then Boy "B" would catch her and turn her back the other way (3/4 around)...I also had envisioned additional complexities and wanted to experiment with "multiple partners and pirouettes", as these boys seemed to have had partnering before and the girl was up for this and a joy to work with.

So. To show everybody what I wanted, I danced the role of the girl myself (having the girl try out each new chunk as I completed the choreography). For close to half an hour (with a rest period whenever the guys would tire) the boys were turning me this way and that, and I built out the choreography. I thought everything was fine and we were doing great.

Suddenly, instead of enough power for 3/4 a turn, one boy gave enough power to turn me easily 2 and 3/4 turns!!!) I was completely unprepared for that and was tilted like the Leaning Tower of Pisa, to boot! Everyone had been reliably giving power for 3/4 turn, so this came completely out of left field. As I spun, I mentally calculated that it would be best to break a wrist and try to avoid hurting my knee again, if at all possible. I already could practically feel the cast on my left wrist and already imagined everyone's signature on it. Just as I prepared to hit the floor, I was caught by the wrist and yanked upwards! UNBELIEVABLE!! I ended up sitting on the ground and half-dangling by one of the boy's hands (Boy "C", who had not been dancing, but was watching) wrapped around my left wrist. I was soooooooooooo relieved. No cast! No signatures on the cast! WHEW!!

I was so grateful to him that I bought him a thank you card the next day. As his entire hand had left a bruise on my forearm (that would last nearly the entire 2 weeks of the Conference), I also included a joke in my card. (It said: You made a big impression on me yesterday!) Incredible! The exact outline of long slender fingers and a thumb impresssion, which was the last to fade. It all turned dark, then sort of green, then a sort of a lovely yellowish color, as bruises are wont to do as they go through the healing process.

He was VERRRRRY modest about the whole thing. His attitude seemed to be-I did the right thing, no big deal, let's move on.

Well, we did move on. I was privileged to have had the opportunity to choreograph on him again a couple more times. He seemed to encourage me to treat him like everyone else and felt at his best when I settled into doing just that.

But I will always be grateful that I didn't have to include "broken wrist" on the list of body parts I've injured throughout my dance career. I am certain that at the angle and speed I was at, that was probably a certainty...and even though the bruise has long since faded away, he still did make a Big Impression on me with his lightning-fast reflexes and selfless attitude. Thank you.