My head is in a whirlwind right now. Here is a list of some of my thoughts in no particular order:
- Cuban dancers are objectively amazing. I wish I had known about their technique as a young dancer. It’s so strong and consistent! It is different in a sense that every combination is pretty short and has one emphasized step (so I lose out of my favorite longer dancey waltz combos) but it is great for drilling challenging steps.
- I can never complain about a poor dance floor again.
- Somehow the characteristic of dilapidation can add beauty (something that Americans, who are always into “new is better”, don’t consider as often).
- Americans are obsessed with schedules, so I need to reorient myself and be ready for anything at any time. Se la vie! It does help me to be honed in on the present moment.
- Because Verb learned the choreography off of a DVD of an old performance and ProDanza learned the choreography off of a more recent performance, we essentially have to relearn everything that we rehearsed in the past two weeks by our first show this coming Thursday. Me and several other company members are feeling pretty nervous and are having a viewing party of the new DVD after dinner tonight (for those who don’t know, dancers also do lots of homework!). Did I mention se la vie? 🙏
- Cuban Spanish is really fun to speak and listen to because it drops the endings of most words and squishes them together. My rusty Spanish is getting an intense workout, but has actually been very useful throughout the trip so far—I even had to help translate a rehearsal today. Having to take ballet class in a second language is especially engaging because you have to focus on every word the teacher utters to stay in the know. Talk about a complete mental and physical workout!
- I am incredibly lucky to dance in a company filled with such supportive people. Every Verb dancer truly goes out of their way to hep each other out. I forget how rare that is in the dance world.
- My toes feel great right now that freed from pointe shoes
- I must live in a sunnier climate after my dance career. A sunny day just makes me so happy! The ProDanza studios are either set up outside or are built with grand open windows. The breeze adds a positive life force all throughout the rehearsal day!
- Current day Cubans have a lot of cuisine options and treat their vegetarians well. Don’t listen to the stereotypes of flavorless food! I am eating like a veggie queen.👸