Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Jody Sawyer School of Ballet

So, I really should be drifting peacefully to sleep right now, but I know Black Swan will karate chop my face if I don't blog my little swan heart out right now. So prepare for the random stream of thoughts that I will attempt to compile into a coherent blog entry.

We found out tonight at class that our teacher has a sense of humor. She was seriously in a good mood. Apparently, one of the students brought her chocolate (brown-noser! I wish I had thought of that). She also has arches that go on for days. Seriously, I can't help but stare at her feet. She makes a perfect fifth look like nothin'. She is also a really good teacher. We will miss her. Because next week, the swans start class at the Jody Sawyer School of Ballet (JSSOB)!

If you don't know who Jody Sawyer is, shame on you! She is only our idol and favorite character from our favorite ballet movie Center Stage. I mean, who wouldn't sleep with Cooper Nielson if they had the chance! But I digress.

The swans will be taking classes at the school Amanda Schull attended before she became Jody Sawyer. We figure it's our best chance to score a role in the next great ballet movie (too bad we just missed out on Black Swan - although the movie was loosely based our our autobiographies). I mean, the way we figure it, we should have the lead roles in the Nutcracker by Christmas, so we should be ready to star in film by summer of next year.

But seriously, the reason we are leaving this class is it is a tad too advanced for our addled brains and geriatric bodies. For now. We really want to try to find that rarest of dance classes, the TRUE adult beginner class. I miss feeling like a bit of a rock star in my college ballet classes (where I think I was the only one who had ever danced a step in my life). We plan to try 3 different classes this weekend (including one at the JSSOB). So, wish us luck and maybe we'll remember your name when they are asking us if we have anyone in mind for supporting roles.

~White Swan

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

Potty Boo Wuh?

I don't know if it was that extra ballet class we crashed on Sunday or the full moon but the swans are ballerina rock stars! Half of the time! When the first half of the class is being taught by a stand in teacher and we are doing basic combinations that we can actually retain in our tiny bird brains! Regardless of the reason, it felt great to know what to do next without staring at a nearby teenager's feet. Ballet class takes on a whole new perspective when you actually raise your chin and have a look around!

And then, our regular teacher arrived. And the swans faces fell. And so did our competence. At one point, our teacher explained that during a demi detourné, the feet go through first position and said, "It's first position, not whatevers." As class progressed, "whatevers" was about all we could manage. There was an epic fail moment during some pas de bourrée combinations but the swans ended the evening on a high note. We take way too much pleasure when we walk out to our cars after class, passing 80% of our fellow students who have to wait outside for their parents to pick them up. I may not have mastered a simple pas de bourrée, but I have wheels, baby.

And now to demonstrate my potty beret:

- Black Swan

Sunday, April 17, 2011


So, Black Swan and I tried a new class today at a different school. We dropped in on what I thought was an adult beginner class (in reality a beginner/intermediate class). And guess what....we didn't suck! We mastered the tombe, pas de bourre and the triple pirouette! OK, maybe that wasn't totally accurate. And maybe we were actually just doing more of the noodle dance during the whole class. And maybe we felt just as lost in this class as we did in our other class and we actually still suck. But it was really nice to try a different class with a different teacher. We warned the teacher before we started that we only had 2 ballet classes under our belts, so she was good about trying to explain things as we went along. We were still pretty hopelessly lost for most of the class, but we are learning.

I do have to say that there is nothing like a rigorous ballet class to make me feel like an arthritic senior citizen. I don't think BS broke her hoo-ha again, but my hip flexors are screaming in agony. Now, where did I put my foam roller? Oh there it is...right next to my walker.

~White Swan

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Class Deux

Things overheard after class deux:

White Swan: Forget the vodka, I think I need a Xanax.

Black Swan: I think I pulled my vagina. Is that even possible? Where am I supposed to put the ice?

Lessons learned:

1. En dehors is a circular movement starting in the front. "En dehors, out the door." En dedans is the opposite, starting in the back.

2. Be careful who you follow in class. The ones that look like they know what they are doing are inexplicably always behind the music. And now, so are you. Because if you weren't following someone, you would have no idea what you were doing and might as well start doing the noodle dance.

3. Lesson three was we suck. Still! I would have thought we would have parts in Swan Lake by our second class. Hmpf.

- Black Swan

Friday, April 8, 2011

My milkshake brings all the boys to the yard

So, there is a certain assumption about ballerina's body-types (which in professional dancers is 9 times out of 10 pretty accurate).  And I'm not saying that this is a negative thing - most of them are able to reach that without unhealthy practices.  But I like to think that as adult beginners, we don't need to worry about portraying that image.  Which is good.  Because I don't.  I mean, I'm relatively fit - but I am a far cry from being considered "svelte" or anyone worrying that I have an eating disorder.  And I just ordered a chocolate milkshake from the diner across the street.  Just wanted to put that out there in the universe.

Don't judge me!!

-White Swan

Tuesday, April 5, 2011


White Swan & I just finished the first ballet class of our adult lives. It was horrifying. Not the class itself or the teacher. Both were good but I was pretty horrible. Being in a leotard again at my age was also horrifying. I have a feeling the pain tomorrow will be horrific, as well. The teacher actually told me & White Swan to take long hot baths when we got home. I didn't hear her tell the other students to take a long hot bath but their mommies probably still bathe them.

I thought I signed us up for Adult Beginner Ballet Theory. It was actually just Ballet Theory. Not specifically for adults or for beginners. While we weren't the oldest in the class, I could have given birth to the youngest. And not even as a slutty teenager. I could have given birth to the youngest student in the class a few years out of college.

Next week I need to remember to have a snack an hour or so before class. When the teacher told us to fondu I was half way out the door to buy some cheese before I realized I was just supposed to bend my standing leg. I would have preferred the cheese. Maybe next week I will have a V-8. With a shot of vodka. That should make it all a bit easier to take.

-Black Swan


Literally "to melt". Abbreviation for a battement fondu. A term used to describe a lowering of the body which is made by bending the knee of the supporting leg. Saint-Leon wrote, "Fondu is on one leg what a plie is on two." (Wikipedia Glossary of Ballet)