Wednesday, August 03, 2011
Through dance and softball, my two daughters, London and Maddie, have found their respective passions. I've always believed that having that kind of passion is a positive for everything in life. For me, it was radio stations. I dreamed of becoming a disc jockey and owning radio stations, and always found a way to write about radio for my school assignments...from high school through graduate school...and it truly shaped my life to where I am/who I am today. As their dance rehearsals and softball practice involve a greater commitment (four or five days a week), I hope that London and Maddie's non-academic pursuits will enhance, rather than hinder, their success at school. So far, so good...our family just doesn't have time to watch much television, which none of us really miss.
I don't know where London got her graceful genes, but as she's grown up she's only become a more beautiful, confident dancer. The closest I get to dance is the audience when London is performing, or reading about it, most recently revisiting Martha Graham's Autobiography, Blood Memory:
"I believe that we learn by practice. Whether it means to learn to dance by practicing dancing or to learn to live by practicing living, the principles are the same. In each it is the performance of a dedicated precise set of acts, physical or intellectual, from which comes shape of achievement, a sense of one's being, a satisfaction of spirit. One becomes in some area an athlete of God."
"To practice means to perform, in the face of all obstacles, some act of vision, of faith, of desire. Practice is a means of inviting the perfection desired."
So in September, London moves on to begin Division II classes with Ballet Forte in Chester, NJ... a pre-professional dance conservatory dedicated to the development of each dancer as an individual. For the past seven years, Ballet Forte has offered dancers ages 5 to 18 a place to grow, focusing on personalized attention....they look at the whole dancer as an artist whose instrument is her body. When London joined Ballet Forte for a trial lesson this spring, I saw her at the barre and knew that she was home.
Ballet Forte at Wings Conservatory, 338 Main Street, Suite 2, Chester, NJ. Phone: (908) 879-8717.