Last weekend I was assailed by a band of curious, inventive ballerinas — and I was thrilled about it.
I was performing a benefit concert for the Ponte Vedra Cultural Center’s music therapy outreach program near Jacksonville, Florida. It was a gala concert with white linen tables, a VIP reception and a full house … and there were Ballerinas!Last weekend I was assailed by a band of curious, inventive ballerinas Click To Tweet
The concert was booked nearly a year ago but a few months ago, the development director of the Ponte Vedra Cultural Center, Toni Boudreaux, who’s a former ballet dancer, connected me with the founder and choreographer of the Ponte Vedra ballet, Dawn Wolf.
Toni thought that Dawn and I might love to work together.
She was right.
Dawn and I started emailing. She had two pieces of mine in mind as dance pieces: “Baroque Flamenco” and “Under the Bed.”
I didn’t have much time to connect, so I sent her drawings of how I conceive of the form of the pieces, she sent me videos of the dancers and the day of the show we met for the first time on the stage of the Ponte Vedra Concert hall.
And that’s when the real fun began for me! For nearly 3 hours we shaped and reshaped the pieces in one long rehearsal.
The biggest challenge was to convince the dancers that it was OK to physically engage with me – to touch the harp, put their fingers through the strings, to do everything the audience wanted to do, and give the audience the satisfaction of seeing it.My biggest challenge was to convince the dancers it was OK to physically engage with me Click To Tweet
And once these young dancers realized that it was OK to really PLAY together, it became true play – sometimes my music leading the dancers, sometimes the dancers leading me in a moment when we brought all our artistry to the table together and created something none of us had ever done before – and something no audience had ever seen.
And man-o-man was it FUN!
Deborah, what a beautiful site to see you and the ballerinas! You all made beautiful music together naturally and with feeling and emotion!
It looked like SO MUCH FUN – Adding a dance component to your performances may be a new way to go, DHC! Thanks so much for sharing these terrific pictures. I could FEEL the excitement!