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About Michelle_Richer

  • Birthday March 26

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  • Gender
  • Location:
    Spalding, South Lincolnshire, England
  • Interests
    Social Dancing and Ballet

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  1. Michelle_Richer

    Simply Adult Ballet

    Last week was the first week back after the summer break or in my case a couple of weeks break after our week at Ballet West ( most classes but not all). It has been a good start as I have started my next piece for Ballet West for the summer of 2019, Le Corsaire’s scene containing the three Odalisques. I will be dancing the entire eight and a half minutes of choreography which consists of several solo’s duets and pas de trios which is normally shared between 3 dancers. Not only are some of the movements quite challenging, but the stamina I need to carry this off will be quite demanding too. Four years ago I created a solo for one of my visits to Ballet West based on the first couple of minutes of choreography from the three Odalisques. One observation my teacher made was, the beginning was boring as nothing was happening over the long introduction, but that’s how it is in the ballet. Then we introduced a walk round then chassis into prep with the music and almost immediately followed into the active rep. With that in mind I have included Adrian as the Slave Master who through a fairly elaborate introduction, introduces me to our imaginary sheik, I guess what we have done is more akin to introducing Medora with the removal of her veil. At the moment it works extremely well with the music, but I guess it will still get a tweak or two before we regard it as finished. Just need to find Adrian a suitable Arabian costume now. The piece is likely to be a little longer as Adrian intervenes with introductions and reverence endings where possible, this has been particularly useful for Adrian as I have grounded him from actively dancing until after his shoulder tear operation. I’m must confess, I’m really exited by this piece. The other significant thing that has happened this week as for the moment I’m injury free, I have started pointe work, or at least strengthening for pointe. Although this had been on the cards for some time, but something always got in the way, usually injuries as I have what one might call a self inflicted hazardous life style, still climbing roofs and trees. One of the recommendation from this years session at Ballet West “I should try Freed pointe shoes” as opposed to my old Bloch Serenades which I used for a short period some years ago. Needless to say I have been and had various pointe shoes tried during fitting and they finally selected Freed too. Thursday morning my one-to-one coaching session is now been focused on pointe prep, I have come away with a daily work to list of pre-pointe exercises, however my coach has rained in the number of reps I was expecting to do. Sunday the 16th I will be attending The Alive Ballet Companies Pointe Worksop at The Place, however its likely I may still be on demi, although it would be nice to at least make a start on the barre work, but I’m in no hurry, as I really need to follow this though this time. Although The Alive Ballet Company is not doing a Christmas performance this year as we are on an extended break until January 2019 when we get our Artistic Director back. I am starting rehearsal with BBT next Sunday, who have been asked to showcase as part of the London Performance Company’s Christmas show, really looking forward to it. I guess from January I will be performing with both companies. Although my studio has become a place I can start to do ballet in now the excessive hot weather has gone. I have finally placed the order this week for Air Conditioning to be installed around end of October/ beginning of November. The electrics have been left to me. Unfortunately my qualified electrician friend is still convalescing after a back operation, so I will be left with the donkey work of digging trenches for the armoured cable and boring holes through walls, which is no problem after the studio build, anyway it helps keep my street cred of my catch phase alive “I’m a ballerina and can do anything “
  2. Michelle_Richer

    Simply Adult Ballet

    Another wonderful week at Ballet West this year again making it the 5th for me (well only 4 days this year) , however it had its ups and downs. The journey this year was extremely tiring especially the first leg up to Dumbarton where we stayed Saturday night. This year we didn’t have our own car, its in for repair, we had a smaller courtesy car with restricted leg room for Adrian’s long legs. Adrian is a 6ft 3 guy and needs a lot of room for comfort so consequently we had too keep stopping for breaks to allow him to have a walk around and stretch his legs. For me it just seamed to take forever to get to our destination. Sunday was a much nicer day with a relatively short second leg to Oban, we arrived at the hotel full of eager anticipation for the following morning at Ballet West. We have stayed at the hotel before so we knew the morning drill, breakfast at 8 usually we are on the road by 8.30 for Ballet West at just before 9.00am , at least we have been in previous years. This year there seamed to be a lot more people for breakfast, it had gone 8.30 before our order was taken, we text Gillian at Ballet West to say we would be late, that really annoyed me, so we ceased to have breakfast at the hotel for the rest of the week. About a mile or two just outside Oban we found a petrol station that provided cooked breakfast rolls while you wait and hot drinks too, so we used them instead, at least we were at Ballet West the rest of the week on time. Day 1 was my first two solo’s, the easy ones I thought, the first Sleeping beauty’s Blue Bird female solo, I had a full A4 sheet of corrections. For corrections we both get together and I document them as its not always possible to implement each and everyone at normal music tempo, first you have to break that old memory, I find it better to run the music slower at about 80% of its normal rate to allow a little additional thinking time to override that old memory and burn in the new one. Many can be done strait away, but there is always one that resists. The second solo was Sleeping Beauty’s Lilac Fairy from the prologue. Fewer corrections from this one but it was just as challenging. Firstly I guess I don’t help my self by insisting it has the full opening port de bras which is mostly done before the commencement of the orchestra. Where I just cheat it a bit, by trying to fit the port de bras into the short preamble missing timing on count 1 but being back on time by count 2, in other words a bit of a compromise. I did find some music used by one of the Vaganova dancers that was a little slower, but it just felt too slow for the main phases. The most challenging piece in this variation is the pirouettes following the attitude to arabesque steps into brush down tendu wit the gesturing leg. At my coaches studio in Lincolnshire which uses a slippy wood floor, these are no problem. In my own studio where there is a significant amount of grip, these pirouettes for me seam very inconsistent. The floor slippyness at Ballet West seams to be between the two. When I first arrived at Ballet West I did sneakily try one of these pirouettes and it worked first time, but when repeating it in the solo it just seamed to be getting worse, I guess I was just getting tired. Day 2 only one solo for this day as this had been quite a tricky piece to dance particularly the retire passé section of 3 sets of 8 counts with different fan arm head positions. This was a piece our teacher Gillian liked and said it suited me, but I guess it was the one that got the most amount of preparation put into it. My choreography for this piece was inspired from two completely different dancers, the first has beautiful port de bras with the fan, the second was lively with intricate port de bras positions through the retire passes, the music was taken initially from the first. However the week before Ballet West I became uneasy about inappropriate noises in the music, firstly after the pull-up into Spanish pose for want of a better word on count two, there is an abrupt sound of the fan being flicked open, the music is not dissimilar to a harp being strummed slowing, for me after pull-up I simply let the fan fall open in sympathy with the musical strum, that fitted beautifully. Later there is a small pause followed by a short abrupt strum where it is appropriate for the dancer to flick the fan open, however on the sound track the dancer flicks it open before the music which is really off putting Grrr. In the end I found some clean music free of fan and pointe shoe noise, it had similar tempo but it was sadly 16 counts short, so I had to adapt the ending. The only really tricky piece in this variation at Ballet West, was remembering to limit the travel of the retire passes otherwise I was inclined to run out of space travelling backwards; the distance available in studio 2 was about 6.5metres. Tuesday evening I also attended Ballet West’s Adult Fitness Class, in previous years Gillian has run this class, but now a Senior Adult Ballet West student called ( I think) Ragu (sorry if its incorrect). There were only two others in the class, a young Ballet West student, I think she would be around 20, and a middle aged lady. I was warned this class was not like Gillian’s, they were right. I can’t remember all that we did but the intensity against the high number of reps. What I can remember at the barre, we did a rise in first and pulled the feet further together, then we went into progressive plies whilst remaining in pull-up, we must have gone through 5 or 6 different levels in the plie, it wasn’t just going through them, each level was held for a sustained period of time, it could have been 10 seconds or so, I certainly felt it in the inner thighs. In the centre we stood balanced on one leg, and made small movements on the other to the side, the number of reps exceeded 100, we also tried to do this on releve of the supporting leg, but I think we all failed miserably after a few reps. Another one was laying on our side, with the top leg turn over with its foot on the floor. Every thing below the hip is off the floor, that leg is made to move up and down in small movements for over 100 reps, before going on to the other leg. Day 3 Swan Lake Lakeside scene and Entrance of Odette PDD including the Mime scene. Although Gillian knew of the mime scene she was no longer familiar with the gestures, so Adrian and I added commentary in as we danced through them. It commenced with our entry of Siegfried , I edit the music to capture something that reflected a happy walk, as this was supposed to be Siegfried’s birthday, Adrian started from the up-stage right corner and walked to the up-stage left corner, as it was a happy piece I had his left hand on his hip and the right wafting about in sympathy with his walk (leg position), however Gillian didn’t think it looked regal enough and suggested a change which Adrian liked so we implemented it. When he finally sees his crossbow in the centre of stage, he briskly walks over to too it and round behind it. Initially I had him checking to see if anyone was watching looking left and transferring his weight to the left leg whist brushing his right arm out as you would do with a breath, then repeating it on the other side. Gillian thought we were trying to be too balletic and suggested making it more natural , this too was changed to a skulking squat peering out to see if anyone was looking, probably not very regal but I must confess it would have conveyed more to the audience about what was going on. Siegfried pick up the bow, feels its weight, looks at it both sides then takes 2 steps forward and pretend to aim it skywards. Lowers it, turns to stage left corner with bow low follows the skyline with his eyes ( for Adrian the top of the studio mirrors) until facing centre ( Audience ) then raises his right arm to follow the imaginary swans he has seen, then we follow largely the choreography of the Royal Ballet including my entrance. There was only one piece I found naggingly difficult and that was recognising in the music where to step out in alarm as Siegfried crept up behind me which followed his mime for “YOU, FLY-A-WAY, NO”, Although I was seldom off time there, I was never comfortable with it as it’s a really poor signature. The piece that follows is Odette soutenu and swan arm burees repeated 4 times, Adrian has always found it difficult to get round me in the short time of this phase and has often been blocking my travel during practice. As it’s highly repetitive he has often forgotten to peel off on the 4th soutenu as my facing with swan arms are different on this one. Although the majority of the choreography is inspired by the Royal Ballet, the ending is quite different after Odette’s pleading with Von Rothbart both followed with a soutenu, mine follows that with a retire passé of the left leg to the front whilst hands palm down crossing around first position, then on the loud blast from the orchestra the arms move out firmly gesturing a very strongly “NO”,. Siegfried from his aiming position lets go of the bow with his left hand , turns CW to face away from me, head down looking very dejected because I wont allow him to shoot Von Rothbart, his left arm droops out at no more than 45 degrees. I run over to it and perch on his arm with my left leg extended in attitude, he turn his head towards me and our arms extend out to 90 degrees, I let go of his arm with my extended arm but I still hold the extension and shake my head slowly reinforcing the “NO”, then the long note appears from the Orchestra indicating the beginning of Odette’s walk off, Siegfried follows shortly after. Although we had borrowed some of the ending from another company, it was to quite different music at the end. The fit we had achieved with the Royal Ballet music was remarkable, I just loved it. At the end of day 3 Adrian was starting to complain about growing pain in his shoulders due to existing tears and said, he would only be dancing it once on his performance on day 4. Day 4 All pieces were danced in costume and videoed as we usually do at the end of our intensive training. As Adrian was videoing my solo’s, we forgot to record the first Swan Lake run through. Adrian bless him agreed to give it one more shot for the recording by Gillian this time. At the weekend Adrian and I went through the videos, I certainly wasn’t very happy with mine, they could have been far better. However I must pay tribute to Adrian I was really impressed with his performance of Swan Lake particularly his piece dancing with me on the 4 soutenu Swan arm buree section, the timing, and leg / arm positions were the best I had seen from him. As a thank you that weekend I took Adrian to Liverpool as he is an ardent supporter of Liverpool Football Club, apart from buying his birthday present as I had agreed too, I bought him a Liver Bird trophy with an LFC inscription on it as a special thank you for all his efforts and of course my nagging to make progress, very well done Adrian. Lessons learnt, we must make more use of more video recording for analysis and self correction, so I guess its more new toys for our studio, eg high speed digital camera and also a wide angled camera to allow operatorless recording.
  3. Michelle_Richer

    Simply Adult Ballet

    The practice run up to this year’s session at Ballet West to say the least has been tough going, mainly due to the lack of studio time in my own studio. This summers abnormally hot weather for around the last month has meant, even at 7am the studio temperature was around 20 ºC at that its very comfortable, by 9am its usually around 25ºC still ok but just starting to be uncomfortable, by 9.30 to 10am its hitting 30ºC, it then for me at least become too uncomfortable to concentrate. After about mid day temperatures inside the studio have been around 45 ºC and normally the temperature has held above 30ºC until after about 9pm at night. Well as it is, we have run out of practice time as Adrian and I are travelling up to Scotland tomorrow (Saturday), staying overnight at Dumbarton, then on up to Oban on Sunday for a 9am start at Ballet West Monday morning. Adrian bless him has done really well in spite of him protesting he’s not a ballet dancer and I expect too much of him, however I was quite impressed at our last session when we did Swan Lakes ending of the Lakeside scene into the Entrance of Odette incorporating the mime scene. Up to this point Adrian had always had the video running on the big scene to prompt with his timing etc, however he popped out to the loo and I had switch it for the sound track only with some minor editing. I was expecting moans about not having the video to follow, but he took all his stride after the third practice run he went all the way through, further more I had changed the very end by adding a couple of pieces of additional mime. I’m quietly confident now things will be fine by our presentation day (Thursday) when we perform all our piece in costume. So it’s up to Scotland with 4 different tutu, a bunch of fans for Don Q as I have broken 3 already, and Adrian of course with his Crossbow. Once we get back it down to installing air conditioning ASAP, unfortunately this isn’t something we can do by ourselves
  4. Hi Kate_N Whilst I don't have any knowledge of classes at Central, my only experience of their studios is we have held the occasional rehearsal there. However as for Desiree Ballentyne I have met here a couple of times, firstly at a Swan Lake Master Class held at ENB’s Markova House, at that time I didn’t know her name but enjoyed the class very much. During last summer I was asked by my companied AD to organise a studio for a one day Ballet Boot Camp, which was fine, but I had no intention of attending it myself. Initially I tried to place it in one of the studio’s in ROH but they were long winded in getting back to me, in the meantime I found one at Sadler’s, by this time I guess I was feeling a little bit guilty of not supporting the activities of my company, so I booked it. I was told Desiree Ballentyne would be conducting the workshop, which was also available for dancers outside the Alive Ballet Company; I was also informed it contained some rep. Rep for me changes everything, so I contacted Desiree by email, she was very open and extremely informative about the rep she was intending to teach, for me that was a big plus point. On the day of the workshop I was first in after Desiree, once I met her I realise we had met before, furthermore I had a photo of us both on my phone at her ENB Swan Lake Master class. The general standard of what was taught I guess was around intermediate, however what I do remember was the abundance of helpful tips that came from her. Desiree also teaches ENB’s Monday night Adult intermediate class, at the time I did check it out but the Monday night advance class was discontinued when Tom Linecar- Bolton left. I left there at the same time as it’s really not worth while in both time and travel to do a single ENB class. If Desiree was to cover both ENB classes (Int and Advance) in the same evening, no question, I would make a point of being there.
  5. Michelle_Richer

    Simply Adult Ballet

    About a month ago I attended a pointe workshop following a nasty swollen little toe type injury, I never thought I would make it, however I had to do it on demi with my soft ballet slippers. I tried to put my old pointe shoes on a couple of days before but there was no way as the pain was excruciating, a day before the workshop I did manage to at least get them on but it was still extremely painful and as Ballet West was coming up, the last thing I wanted to do was wreck all the work we had put in to our rep for that. Pointe work for me somehow seems to be fated, last Autumn I had booked and paid for a ballet and pointe work course held by our ballet company “Alive” at the Royal Ballet School, sadly I missed that too through injury. Although this time it was classified as a workshop, its likely to be repeated on a periodic basis providing there are sufficient numbers to make it worthwhile, I did ask that the next one be after I return back from Ballet West . I was hoping as each of my regular classes and coaching sessions closed for the summer break, I would get a good run of rep practice before Ballet West in a couple of weeks time, however the recent hot weather has rendered my studio unusable after about 9.30am as the inside temperature approaches 30 degrees C, some days by mid day its been around 45 degrees. For the next two weeks I’m back to hiring my local hall, otherwise we are likely to be less polished this year than previously. Once back we have to invest in air conditioning for the studio as we have tried the simple things like opening the doors and windows and using our large wind generator fan. We have already looked at the feasibility of where to install a split air conditioning unit. There is only one place, that is to lower the mirror attached to the house wall to floor level, that will create sufficient room above it for the internal air conditioning unit and access for the pipe work to the external compressor unit. At least it will also provided heating for the cold winter temperatures too. I never dreamt I would be doing all this for ballet when I started, but I guess its all a learning process.
  6. Michelle_Richer

    Powerhouse Ballet

    Hi Terpsichore Further to the conversation we had on the train a few weeks ago, about a low cost way to get you dancers performing stage, without incurring the substantial cost of a performing venue, by making use of the Ultimate Dance Showcase events. The only cost incurred is each dancers registration fee of £8.00 for large groups (10 -19 performers)and £10 for small groups(4 – 9 performers), there are other categories too. However your time on stage is limited, if you are competing as you will loose a quarter point for every 5 seconds over your time limit. Maximum time for small groups are 3:00 minutes and large groups 4 minutes. This shouldn’t be too demanding for your less experienced dancers, however there are provisions in the entry for two standards, Novice and Competitive , Novice is for beginning dancers (less than two years) ONLY who have little or no experience competing, the complexity of their dance routine should be based on this. Dates and venues that may interest you: BIRMINGHAM 3rd November 2018 LIVERPOOL 22 and 23 June 2019 One point worth noting, there is no provision on site for rehearsing and you will have to make you own arrangements at a local studio. Our UDSC was at their London venue The Greenwood Theatre, so I hired two studio’s within RAD HQ, one for ourselves and the other for our sister contemporary dance company. Although the event caters for all age groups, the organisers do tend to group similar age groups together, our UDSC was a two day event, adults and teens were on the second day. For further info go to the Ultimate Dance Showcase Website : https://udsuk.co.uk/ Hope that helps PS Do say hello to Annemarie for me when you next see her
  7. Michelle_Richer

    Simply Adult Ballet

    It seams I’m in the wars again, since the studio is now completed and fully operational, well at least I’m not hiring studios for my own practice anymore and so some of our attention has turned to my garden and house. That said its just as injurious as ballet, it was something as simple as trying to break willow tree braches to let sufficient light in for newly planted water irises to grow. I guess the willow branch once it was down was a bit too big to break by hand, except for this ballerina. I bent it over to break it, and force my whole body weight behind it, it wouldn’t go at first but then it snapped with an exploding crack and I slammed into the river edge concrete path. My first though was to try and stop myself rolling into the river, then for a moment just lay there mentally checking everything and thinking here we go again more debilitating injuries. Gradually I got up but very shaken at least I could move but I realise I felt badly bruised down my left side and my little toe on that side hurt like hell but I didn’t think I had broken it. At first I couldn’t wear shoes, the compression on that swollen toe was too painful, it was socks on the carpet at home. The next day was Body conditioning followed by ballet class, although I was able to drive without too much discomfort in shoes, it was painful to walk, at least body conditioning most of us do that in socks or bare feet, that was fine until one of the exercise we do on our side, and of course we repeat it on both sides, on the left it was unbearable and I cheated it (which I told my teacher), by lifting my body above the affected area, ballet wasn’t too bad other than releve’s on the left foot which really effected the little toe. When I finally got home I checked myself in the wardrobe mirror, I couldn’t believe what I was seeing, my thigh from just above the knee at the side , to my bum was absolutely black with a massive brews, there was some brewsing on the little toe but it was very swollen, however I did manage all my classes that week. It has taken just over two weeks to loose the browses, although the little toes is still somewhat swollen. However another issue may have shown up this Sunday. Sunday is now the day that Adrian and I practice our PDD for our visit to Ballet West, we are now working on an extract of the Lakeside scene and Entrance of Odette from Act2 of Swan Lake. Adrian seams to have made a good job of his walk on as Prince Siegfried, finding his crossbow and gesturing with it until he sees the flock of swans, then we follow the standard choreography into the entrance of Odette, that was fine but unpolished until we got to where Odette does a sequence of 4 soutenu/ swan arm burree’s whilst Siegfried is trying to put his arm around her ( 3 times), As Siegfried piece is quite fast, Adrian bless him couldn’t get around quick enough, so I broke it down to three simple steps and a ¾ turn. As I was demonstrating it too him I stretched my left leg and something went in my left knee, it was extremely painful, I stopped and rested for a while, but I could still feel a presence in my knee, we resumed and it happened again, this time I was getting rather worried as this has never happened before. As we had done that piece to death, I thought it would be useful to make a start on the mime scene and feed it too him in quite small doses, I remember carrying it on beyond where I had taught it to Adrian , to where the “Wicket magician has made me into a swan”, on SWAN I step back with the right leg , left leg in deep fondu with the left extended back strait and pointed, I could barely get down with the left leg on Sunday (yesterday). However I tried that after my body conditioning class today and it was no problem and pain free, it just leaves a bit of a question mark of uncertainty. My only concern now is I have a Pointework workshop booked for Sunday, I just hope things hold up for that, fingers crossed.
  8. Michelle_Richer

    Bolshoi in cinema - Coppelia June 10th

    I looked for him but didn't recognise him.
  9. Michelle_Richer

    Birthday/Christmas pressies

    I know this posting is not related to the difficulties with Sansha, however it is in keeping with the thread description, that why I waited until Sancha related post had finished. I just had to share what I think has been my most beautiful birthday present ever given to me. I was given to me by my dear sister Polly just a few month ago, I think its absolutely gorgeous and I will always treasure it.
  10. Michelle_Richer

    Simply Adult Ballet

    Hi Coleman For my mind-set it would seam logical to plan for mixed participants, and if there is no guys present do a little more with the girls pieces, as inevitably they tend to be simplified to meat the short time schedule, that really isn’t rocket science. I guess I was spoilt in my early RAD rep workshops as we did get some advance notice. I do remember my very first one with RAD held in Cambridge where we did “Dance of the Knights” from Romeo and Juliet. For me the sequence from a video of dance seamed almost impossible to remember, then one day I had this idea of creating a diagram showing the path of the sequence with notation of the movement. Hey- presto, I found I could hold that picture in my head. When it came to the workshop, this piece required both male and female dancers, some of the girls had to dance the male parts, I quickly took my place as the lead girl on the right ( as in the two column of girls coming down the stairs) , wow I really enjoyed that, but was a little disappointed as we only danced part of it. We also did Juliet’s solo which we may not have had advanced warning off. The one remark I remember my RAD teacher saying, “I know we will see you again”, she was right, as at one time I would virtually hoover up any rep workshops going, I guess as time when on I just got more selective. I guess to a large extent I’ve move away from rep workshops to using a one-to-one rep coach twice a week and working towards finally presenting my work at Ballet West in Scotland once a year. This will be my fifth year, ordinarily I would have at least two PDD’s and 5 or 6 solo’s, however this year has been really difficult as I incurred a leg injury which meant I hadn’t really worked on anything since my last visit to Ballet West last August until after Christmas, and then for the first two or three month I was very guarded as to what I put my body through, and of course there was the other complication of extending my own studio which was also very time consuming. See studio picture internal and external. I see you mentioned “The Lilac Fairy” I’m taking that variation from the prologue up to Ballet West this year, that certainly wasn’t planned. This came about at the Alive Ballet Company had set a date for a Ballet Boot Camp and my job was find a suitable studio for it, I did try the Royal Opera House but the studios were extremely expensive , finally I settled on Sadlers Wells which were really nice studios at a fraction of the cost. Whist I didn’t intend to do this boot-camp I guess curiosity got the better of me and I contacted our guest teacher. She was extremely helpful in telling me the pieces we would be dancing. The Lilac Fairy was one of them, at the time I didn’t realist there are at least two completely different versions. When I met her on the day, I realised I had actually met her before, in fact I had a photo of us together when she ran an ENB Swan Lake Master Class. Fortunately the version taught (Russian) was the same as I had familiarity with, although what we were taught was simplified in places and had the opening port de bra removed, it gave me a head start. At least when I got back to my rep coach, the simplification was removed, I also managed to find music that would allow the opening port de bra as this was normally done prior to the orchestra starting, my version is loosely based on Paris Opera Ballet’s version with a little of my own, I really fell in love with the piece. But things don’t always go to plan, Last year I did both the Black Swan PDD and Solo, This year I wanted to include an alternative Black Swan solo, but I held it until last to allow my right leg to sufficiently recover. It has a 3 step promenade followed by a couple of fouettes all repeating 3 times without the gesturing leg touching the ground. At first it didn’t look too difficult, whist I had some success on the way, I simply didn’t have enough stamina to consistently complete this section, that coupled with breaks by my rep coach and also my occasional break to complete my studio meant in some instances I appeared to be going backwards. To make matters worse, months of work I had put in with The Nutcracker PDD with Adrian came to a halt when Adrian appeared to hurt his arm. This was a pirouette sequence of 5 single singles where I don’t actually stop between them , and Adrian then swaps his arm , the Right which was in fifth with finger down for my support, goes low, with Left which was pushing my left hand around for momentum, goes high, I go through a turn into a dip, It was on the arm swap he hurt himself. We stopped and called a halt to it until it was checked out. Fortunately the same week a specialist surgeon was calling at Adrian medical centre and Adrian was able to see him, An ultra scan was done on both shoulders and there is tears in both, so Nutcracker is out for this year. According to Adrian is shoulder is ok providing he doesn’t take his arms through 5th, so we are gently taking him through the PDD with the Entrance of Odette combining part of the Lakeside scene, so far so good. However with the alternative Black Swan solo problems, I’ve had to shelve that for this year and switch to the Bluebird female solo, that has worked out really well. Just coming back to your Flashbacks, I’ve had an number of those from pieces I’ve danced on stage but I have one in particular that really haunts me, it’s the Opening of Act 4 of Swan Lake , perhaps as it is a particularly long piece and it was broken up into three pieces, but not taught in sequence. This was done at a LAB intensive at The Royal Ballet School in Covent Garden, that music is not only haunting its almost spiritual in the feeling I experience, it really is strangely beautiful.
  11. Michelle_Richer

    Simply Adult Ballet

    Hi Coleman I’m glad you managed to make Elmhurst, I hope you enjoyed the Coppelia workshop. I was with RAD Adult Associates for a couple of years just before the Rep workshops were introduced on the same day. I must confess when I first started with them I thoroughly enjoyed it, attitudes seemed very different, for my first term I only signed up for Improver 2 and body conditioning, however I was asked it I would also like to sign up for Improvers 1 and I could do absolute beginners free, as this would help give the small number of absolute beginners in the class other dancers to follow. There were about 6 of us that did that to help out. Lunch time was a bit of a social gathering as we all met in the common room with the teachers; it was also used for changing as most of us had leotards under our day clothes. As I made a full day of it I used to ask if I could use the studios for my own practice, and that became a regular thing for me and lasted for about a year. The second year things became much different, the common room became out of bounds, we had to take food and drink into the studio at lunchtime, something I positively hated doing, it just didn’t seam right. I ask again about using the studios for my own practice, I didn’t get the positive and helpful response I was expecting, basically they didn’t want to know, although they didn’t forbid it. We had one teacher that started to introduce short pieces of rep into the Improvers 2 session which was the last class of the day , that was really enjoyable. I was really delighted when RAD had combined an afternoon of rep with a morning for the Adult Associates, needless to say I signed up for a full term of both. Firstly I enquired what particular piece we would be dancing, that wasn’t forthcoming and I really do hate going in blind without making an informed decision. As it was I was overtaken by circumstances as I sustained a nasty leg injury which stopped me dancing for 4 to 5 months. I persisted for a while in trying to get advance info on what was to be taught but nothing significant was ever fourth coming, so in the end I dropped Elmhurst completely, but never the less I do miss it.
  12. Michelle_Richer

    Simply Adult Ballet

    Oh okay, you could always do both. I would have like to see Karis again. I see they do a lot of overseas retreats too, it may be worth a look. I'm thinking of doing a couple of ENB's taster classes, as I really miss the old place, not that I will be going back.
  13. Michelle_Richer

    Simply Adult Ballet

    Hi LinMM You could always make a weekend of it with a mini retreat at the Royal Conservatoire Of Scotland base on Scottish Ballet’s production of Cinderella. Ballet classes will be taught by En Avant Ballet founder Karis Scarlette and Cinderella Repertoire Workshops will be coached by Principal dancer Bethany Kingsley-Garner. Karis Scarlette was my teacher many moon ago when my monthly treat was doing both ballet classes that evening at the Royal Opera House, but it was extremely expensive. I wouldn’t mind doing that workshop, but it’s the week before Adrian and I travel up to Ballet West for our one week one-to-one intensive.
  14. Michelle_Richer

    Simply Adult Ballet

    Well done Balletgremlin that’s brilliant. As several have mentioned RAD’s discovering Repertoire, I wonder if anyone has seen RAD,s PDD workshop at the Ballet Cymru studio in Newport, a really large and gorgeous studio for a such a small ballet company. https://www.eventbrite.co.uk/e/rad-dancing-together-2018-registration-42037959669?aff=erelpanelorg Its on today Sunday the 29th April, sadly I didn’t see it until yesterday, I would have dearly like to have attended all three grades and made a day of it.
  15. Michelle_Richer

    Simply Adult Ballet

    Oh yes, its normally made to order, however they had one in stock so I bought it and arranged delivery for the 18th. My only real shortage now is the 6 mirrors, on Friday (Day3 of the uPVC build as in the picture) when the roof was installed, I was able to check the track clearance, and there is no problem at all. Unfortunately when I went to order the mirrors, the supplier is out of stock and so is the manufacturer. At the moment I’m not too worried as I can’t install them until the Harlequin sprung is installed, it’s not due for delivery until the 25th. One thing I hadn’t anticipated, I will need scaffolding to install the ceiling lights and rotating mirror ball from the old installation. Luckily that’s no problem.