Practice is an essential part of our lives, and it comes in different shapes and contexts. We practice an
instrument, we practice yoga, we practice communication, we practice listening, we practice
mindfulness, we practice patience. The list is endless.
In this month's article, I would like to share some thoughts about what practicing actually means, how
we can practice in a way that serves us, as well as deeper contemplations about practice as a
concept for art and life.
Being in class (whether in the literal classroom or the school of life), is all about understanding things. Both for the students and the teacher. May it be a technique, music theory, a choreography, or a
question. But when can we really say we have understood something? When we can do it fast?
When we don't have to think about it anymore?
I've been realizing more and more that there is a great difference between rational understanding
and emotional understanding. In the arts as well as in life.
Not in time. Boring. Always the same. Stupid. Not enough sounds. Too many sounds. Not confident enough. Too perky. Not kind enough. Too nice. Not expressive enough. Too vulnerable. Perfectionism has many voices, but none of them are very pleasant to be around. We probably all have to deal with perfectionism, some more regularly than others. If it's creating a new work, improvising, or even dealing with the tasks of entrepreneurship. We can always find something. Perfectionism can come in...
We are living in interesting times. The recent political happenings – names do not have to be named – are causing everyone to think about society's current situation. Even I as someone who is not particularly inclined to letting politics affect their life, have never spoken as much about politics as in these days. Issues like these can feel overwhelming and numbing, and leave many of us wondering what we can do, and how we can actively create a healthy present and future. As an artist, my...
They are everywhere. Fancy pullback combinations, 5 count wings, triple over the toes, toe stands. I don't know a single tap dancer today (including myself) who has never had any aspiration to do these things. And it's not surprising, since trick steps are not only displaying a great amount of body control, but also catch everyone's eye. I remember after accomplishing my very first pullback I felt like “Now I'm an advanced tap dancer!”
There are already many articles around that discuss the relationship between dance and music, and I have to say I really enjoyed reading up on this topic. In this month's article, I would first like to present some of the discoveries that have previously been made by others. Then I would like to share my own contemplations about it, giving examples and illustrations from the world of tap dance, in order to ultimately apply it to all art forms existing.
Whenever somebody asks me the typical question “What kinds of music do people tap dance to?”, I say “Usually jazz, but also funk, hip hop, soul, maybe even classical music. Basically you can tap to anything!” And this answer implies everything and nothing at the same time. Which made me think about something. Ballet dancers are associated with classical music, Indian dancers with classical Indian music, hip hop dancers with hip hop music. But tap dancers? The picture is kind of blurry....