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  1. Just gone through my dance bag, removing half-squashed energy bars, putting miscellaneous warm-ups in the wash and tidying everything else away for now. Just been dealing with emails from ENB and The Ballet Retreat dealing with repayments and credits for cancelled events. It's a very sad time 😢
  2. I have lessons at two different dance schools. One has closed from today, the other will close from Thursday. We will probably do the filmed exams, but details aren't available yet.
  3. I was supposed to be taking Grade 7 next Friday. My teacher has just asked me what I think about the option of filming it. If the exam is rescheduled (which presumably wouldn't be for some months), that would mean having to get up to fitness and exam quality again after a gap in working as presumably schools will be closing soon. Though I only have a private lesson and I don't know if private lessons would be allowed to continue even if classes stop. I think I might prefer to crack on with working for Grade 8 and then take 7 and 8 together once life reverts to normal.
  4. Yes, I'm doing it. I've been to lots before (I think this is my 8th). I'm sure you will love it. They always used to be held at Rambert but they have had difficulty making bookings there recently so have switched to Sadler's Wells. The studio is not as spacious as at Rambert or at Northern where they hold their Leeds retreats. But the lunches are pretty good!
  5. Oh Gremlin, how rotten for you! That sounds awful. Sending you best wishes for your recovery. I worry about delays because I want to achieve my goals while I am able. I fear that old-age decline might happen at a faster rate than technical improvement. So far so good - improvement is winning out - but I don't know how long that will continue and if I'll eventually reach a physical limit. This is why being injured is such a shock and a frustration - it brings home just how easy it is to go from "very fit and active" to having to accept limitations. I want to carry on being a grand jeté granny!
  6. It's a bit more than three weeks to go till my Grade 7 exam and the big question is whether or not I can manage it with my shoulder injury. I wrote about it a few weeks ago in another thread (waves to LinMM with a slightly limited waving motion). I've been having physio every week, and starting acupuncture tomorrow too. It started off with a great improvement (very optimistic about being ok for exam), followed by a big step right backward to the beginning (despairing of being able to take exam at all this year), followed by a mixture of good and bad days (uncertainty). When I dance I find it does kind of loosen it up and my teacher said today too that there's been a huge improvement in some of my exam work from NOT using my arms - I've needed to develop strength because I can't use arms for balance or impetus, and my Free Movement has come on fabulously as all the movement is really happening in my back (as it should be). I can do normal port de bras up to 5th and down through second, but reverse port de bras has a really painful spot part way up. I can now do the Hungarian character arm movement, not with perfect technique, but adequate. My physio does think that I might be able to grit my teeth (invisibly of course while maintaining ballerina face) and push through just for the exam, even if it sets back my progress in general I'm not going to make a final decision about continuing or withdrawing until the week of the exam. However if I take the exam now I know I may lose some marks for my arms. If I withdraw I will need to take the exam later in the year in a RAV, which has additional nerve-wracking aspects such as dancing with strangers and not being familiar with the space - which might lead to me losing marks in other ways. So it's swings and roundabouts. My own school only has exam sessions once a year and it would be frustrating to wait a whole year, but could I start on Grade 8 and take both exams next year? It's all a dilemma.
  7. Well, no. Pedogogy means the theory, philosophy and methodologies of teaching. A pedagogue is simply a teacher, following whatever philosophy and methodology that particular teacher follows. That might mean that they are formal and structured in their approach or equally, if such is their philosophy, learner-centred, experimental, collaborative...
  8. How exciting to see that Baroque dance is more available than it used to be - I studied it about 35 years ago when it was somewhat niche. (Oops, don't mean to sound all "I used to do that before it was cool!") Anyway, as a baroque dancer you will have really good posture and neat feet. You'll find allegro much easier than beginners usually do. Good luck in finding a suitable class.
  9. I returned to ballet three years ago after a 25 year break and went straight back into an Intermediate class. Like you, I had really wanted to do IF but there wasn't a class available so Inter it was. I had been working beyond Inter level as a teen and as a "young" adult (through my 30s), so I was familiar with the vocab and everything at a theoretical level but the difficulties were general stamina, and getting pirouettes especially doubles and beats back up to scratch - - in fact doubles are still hit and miss two years later! And pointe work - that was the bane of my life. If I could do it again I would try to do IF first, but if I couldn't I would relax and take my time over it. I passed but not with a good mark - it could have better if I hadn't rushed to keep up with the teens.
  10. The Level 3 Princess Florine variation - it ends in a kneel, but one of the development exercises " Posé to arabesque and kneel" consists of repeatedly kneeling and just popping up again into a degagé derrière like it's the easiest thing in the world!
  11. Another Vintage Extra Mature dancer here - currently soon to take Grade 7. I find elegant kneeling (worse still - getting up again) about the hardest thing to do in the syllabus, but as far as I know we just have to get on with it! You could ask your teacher to ask the RAD for advice, but from what I understand if marks depend on it you would lose those marks. That said, I passed Grade 6 which included a kneel in the adage and another in the character, neither of which were executed particularly gracefully and I found the fast drop to the knee in character particularly taxing. While getting up again I did a subtle push with my hands on my knee. I did wear a knee support on my weaker knee. Alas, in grade 7 there are several places where I will have to get up from the floor without any little "cheats". It seems that we just have to do the best we can with our physical shortcomings.
  12. Kudos to everyone who has managed to cope especially over prolonged periods. It's remarkable how we take mobility for granted and then how the most ordinary actions can suddenly become difficult. It makes you aware of how many people have to find get arounds for mobility problems all their lives. I'm managing my bra by putting it on back to front then twizzling it round. Hair brushing and washing are awkward but doable. For ballet doing a bun is impossible. I can manage a kind of messy twist hair style or my current favourite hairstyle which is "vintage ballet" - just tucked into a net with a wide hairband. I'm about to have a go at changing my duvet cover - I think that's going to involve basically crawling inside it! I've made a start on the exercises the physio has given me. I've definitely got somewhat better ability to raise my arm today but rotating behind my back (as required for bra fastening or Hungarian character port de bras) is the area where I have 0 movement.
  13. Yes, I gather that it's important to stop it from becoming tight and weak while it's painful and irritated. Glad to hear you are off the painkillers. I need to find the perfect sleeping position, though I'm rather constrained by the demands (and weight) of my very entitled cat!
  14. Well the physio was very positive. It seems to be the infraspinatus and some bursitis but she's hopeful as I gained measurable improvements in range of movement after manipulation and passive stretching. I could even do a nice 5th position! So I have to use the kind of strategies I have already been doing to avoid pain and irritation and I have some very gentle exercises to do to start with to maintain/increase mobility while avoiding irritation. This will be followed by further stretches and strengthening once it's all calmed down a bit. She wants to see me again next week. She's aware of my exam, the kind of movements I need to be able to do and the time frame and hopes it will be ok in time but we'll have to see how it goes and trying to rush things will just be counter-productive.
  15. Oh Lin, how rotten for you, just when your foot is getting better. Isn't it dreadful when you're an active oldie and then something happens and suddenly you can't do the things that are such a big part of our lives and of what is keeping us young? I managed my exam prep lesson today, just substituting 1st position for 5th and 3rd for 4th and at least I can work on everything else. I'm not taking any pain killers at all. If i remember not to make movements that I shouldn't then it doesn't hurt and if I do then it burns/aches for some minutes after the aaagh! moment but then quietens down again. I can manage 2nd position fine and even arabesque and I can lift and carry things and push them as long as they are no higher than a little over waist height. However my sleep is very disrupted as I just can't find a comfortable position and there's all kinds of odd things that are difficult (putting my hair up, getting my arm into a sleeve). I shall ask the physio tomorrow if I really should be seeing a doctor. And I'll need a doctor's certificate if I need to defer my exam : (
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