We are four weeks out from recital which means our recital day countdown is officially underway! Costumes are here and choreography is finished. In these last few weeks we will practice the dances to make sure dancers are confident and the dances look polished. After that our youth dancers will have two opportunities to show their family and friends what their hours of hard work have produced.
History behind two performances.
A few years ago we only had one youth program recital. Dress rehearsal was Friday evening and the official performance date was on Saturday. Saturday came around and we ran into an interesting predicament. Our youth recital had sold out. While we celebrated the fact that we had enough students to sell out a 600+ seat theater, it was upsetting to tell family and friends who came to the recital that we didn’t have enough space for them to watch their dancer perform. For that reason, we added a second show!
Benefits from the perspective of a dancer.
No matter how much practice we get in the studio, performing on stage brings a different energy to our dancing. Whether it’s nerves or excitement, things just feel different which can cause our dancing to be shaky, less grounded, or even cause mental blips. The desire to impress and entertain family and friends is something that can’t be replicated in front of a mirror. Friday night shows are amazing because of that energy and anticipation. As a dancer I know that on Friday I go all out because of it!
I may be dancing with more energy on Friday, but on Saturday I’m always able to dance with more confidence. I’m more familiar with the stage, my spacing, and the light cues. I also can relax more and my dancing looks more polished. It’s also nice to get a second chance to perform if something didn’t go as planned the previous evening. During the Saturday night show I’ve found my groove and feel like everything has really come together.
Benefits from the perspective of a viewer.
Watching a dance performance twice is similar to watching a movie twice. The first time I watch a performance I don’t know what to expect. As I watch my eye may be directed to one area of the stage while something different is happening in another area of the stage. When I’m piecing together the meaning of the dance, I may miss how it correlates with the song lyrics. Similarly to performing, sometimes I’m so excited to watch a dance performance that the actual viewing experience may be overstimulating.
The second time I see the show I always see things I didn’t notice the first time. I have a greater understanding of what is going on and can make the connections between the dancing and the story. Also, if my eye was pulled to a certain part of the stage the night before, I know I can watch what is going on on the other side this time. There are even times when something really cool happens – a lift, a turn, maybe a jump I’ve never seen. Going twice means I get to see it again!
Benefits from the perspective of a teacher.
Dance is different from a lot of activities because parents may not be able to witness their student’s progress on a weekly basis. Dancers may practice from September – May without their parents ever being able to see what we see in the studio. Recital is the only time that year that the students have to celebrate their accomplishments and be proud of their hard work. Performing twice not only gives them a chance to show off how far they have come, but also give them the opportunity to learn and grow from one night to the next.
Join Atlanta Dance Central for our recitals:
Youth Recitals: Friday & Saturday, May 12 & 13 at 7 p.m.
Kinder Recitals: Saturday May 13 at 11 a.m. & 2 p.m.
All recitals are held at Blessed Trinity High School.