I had decided a while back to come out of hibernation and take up my dance shoes again. However, my little home studio has grown dull and lifeless without community. So, I recently mused on the idea of taking a class. Aside from networking, with my past professional background in lyrical ballet, contemporary, and international styles wherein training occurred a long time ago, I could definitely use refreshers.
On a whim and to my delighted surprise, I located a Russian Gypsy/Flamenco troupe with a strong foundation in ballet currently based out of my local city, Knoxville. Directed by Olga, who not only offers classes for technique but also teaches the significance and history behind the movements and music, she provides opportunities to perform, complete with colorful costumes and beautiful expressions, capturing the hearts of audiences, through her company Sangria Dance. I found gold.
After I took the first class, a conversation went along in my mind: “Well there you are, Tessa! Where have you been?” How could I possibly have retreated from the dance world like I had when I've missed it so much? I do know for certain it was high time to make a change and get back with it – and it feels great. Not only is dance good for the body, it’s nourishment for the mind and soul, too. A dancer without community or personal growth can feel depleted. I've joined the troupe, reconnecting with like-minded individuals in a setting that’s culturally vibrant and expansive. Truly, Sangria Dance is a feast of sustenance to a hungry dancer. Dance is a way of life. And as these things often go, it’ll enhance my writing, too.
“We dance for laughter, we dance for tears, we dance for madness, we dance for fears, we dance for hopes, we dance for screams, we are the dancers, we create the dreams.”—Albert Einstein
By searching for music in an attempt to resurrect the not-dead-but-buried dancer in me, I stumbled upon The Paganini Duo on YouTube. These brilliant musicians, Gustaw Szelski-violin, and Georg Mertens-guitar/cello, would inspire anybody. I purchased their CD, An Hour in Heaven: Traditional Gypsy Music & Free Improvisations, and look forward to adding more to my collection. Check out their performances online. I’m grateful for the ability to view their concerts in this manner, as it’s not an easy hop, skip, or jump over land and sea from the U.S. to the Jenolan Caves in Australia, where they appear regularly. Speaking of the caves, there’s another fascinating bit to read about, FYI. I’m sharing one of their clips here for your convenience, to embrace and cherish as I have. Enjoy.
Oh!—and dance as if nobody is watching.