Artist: Robert Connor, Dance Theatre of Ireland
Following in the discipline of a regular warm-up, we start the session with breathing, and moving in a unison pattern of two-steps, elevating rhythms and simple stretching.
“Whip Whip, Ney Ney” is becoming a fixture in the class, and each time we do it, there is the opportunity to perfect the set movements and enhance the individual styling on the “watch me” part of the song.
Today we start on a new phrase to a second of the songs the students selected, “Sorry” by Justine Beiber. Admittedly I would not have chosen (or have heard) this piece of music, except for the students, and I welcome the opportunity to work with it. The gentle beat of the track invites a smoother, more fluid movement response, and we work on ripples, swings and twists.
Having explored hand supported balances, floor movements and low level movement in previous session, this week we begin working on inversion…taking weight fully on the hands, upending with one leg high and the other near the floor. Something like a handstand, but not a full balance, more of a suspension, the students are challenged to have a go. Some find the inversion hard; it requires a certain amount of arm strength, which, they lack.
But the movement is not entirely dependent on strength as much as “architecture” and with some practice keeping the arms straight as they are supporting, they begin to get a feel for supporting their own weight on their hands. Also…having a clear thought for standing up to recover is important for getting on two feet again.
Putting it together with side steps, ripples, step ball change, twist swings, turning grapevine, we have the start of a sequence to “Sorry”!