On Saturday, Leven was in her recital for Myers Ballet School on stage at Proctors Theater in Schenectady, and I volunteered backstage with the ulterior motive of wanting to capture some of the magical moments from backstage.
We have had such a positive experience with Myers Ballet School, and I have watched each year as Levy dances her way through the classes and performances, making friendships and learning new things and gathering grace and poise and growing up before my very eyes.
The thing is, besides the hard work they all put in, there really is something almost frozen in time about these performances. The girls collect in little groups and play hand clapping games and get into little fits of giggles. They lean on each other's shoulders to stretch their feet and help smooth out each other's tutus. They sit in silence in the wings, sweetly shushing each other while they watch the performers on stage before them. Except for a few quick minutes during lunch in the dressing room, there were no electronics, there was no TV, there was nothing but the excitement of waiting to perform and the silliness of a group of little girls all together having fun.
It's impossible to not get caught up in the headiness of it all, the fast little ballet slippered feet going down the stairs to the stage, seeing the lights go up, hearing the musical cues, then watching them rush off backstage, faces flushed and big smiles of relief and pride of their job well done. The girls all look up to each other, Levy's age looks up to the teenagers, the little girls look up to Levy's group, and they all look out for each other.
Levy gets her pointe shoes this week, and I can hardly believe it is happening already. I remember when she was one of the youngest ones at the recital, with the little chubby bellies leftover from toddlerhood, a tiny smear of red lipstick for the big show.
I am so grateful Leven found ballet and found Myers Ballet School. Our years are highlighted with the two performances, Nutcracker in the fall and the recital in the spring, and we both miss it when it's over.
and her very first recital...
click here to find out more about Myers Ballet School and for registration info