How Dance Can Move You

1 Aug

Ok, so it’s like, literally, moving with its pirouettes and passés and kick ball changes. But dance can also move you, as in emotionally, or spiritually. And, if you are watching a dance performance, it can also move you to get off your butt and do some moving yourself.

A couple months ago I watched a dance concert covering modern, jazz, tap, ballet and point at a local dance studio near me. A little before that I subbed for a high school modern dance class. I also have been taking dance classes, at the Sweat Spot and Center Stage Dance. Basically, there’s been a lot of dance in my life lately, and I’m really loving it.

Sitting in the audience at the dance concert, I enjoyed being transported into another world. The use of costumes, light and music helped, but really it was the specific sequence of movements of the dancers that created the new world. Each piece with a theme, they evoked something different. It’s a visceral experience, one that is hard to explain. However, it made me feel in a new way, think in a new way. I guess that is the goal of art? Or at least one of the goals.

I’ve mentioned this before, the importance of movement and dance as it relates to the actor, but recently I’ve really been practicing this. I started taking up ballet. This was terrifying at first, as I haven’t put on a pair of ballet slippers since I was, like, five years old, but it’s such a great way to push myself. It teaches discipline, connection and awareness to your body and of course, it’s a great work out. I’ve also been taking a modern dance class that makes you move in a very different way, and it’s an amazing release.

I find that dance is the perfect complement to acting. Sometimes I am sick of acting classes but I still want to take some kind of class, and dance can still help you as an actor. It opens you up emotionally (I really believe that the physical and emotional are so interconnected), it’s healthy, and it gives you another “skill” you can throw on to the good ‘ol resume.