A behind the scenes peek at theater week!

theater weekTheater week is the final week before the show

“Theater week” can be fun and challenging! Join me in rehearsal and behind the scenes performances.

Pretty much all the dancers,  the ballet teachers and their families are impacted by “theater week”!. We spend the entire week in rehearsal at the studio and theater for the exciting upcoming spring shows.  Everyone is running on a high of anticipation, excitement and anxiety. We want the experience to be memorable for our students and families.

Getting to theater week

At the studio where I teach, each class has a dance. At  my former studio, each level had a dance in part of a story ballet. I have found the dance for each class rather stressful but it works!

As just one of their several ballet teachers, I have set four dances for four classes and want each one to shine. I have high standards that I hope are met. On performance day, I let go of them.  However, none of us are completely relaxed until the final curtain closes.

Of course, the dancers don’t know this! I have learned to adopt this attitude after years of dancing. If you are not ready on performance day, nothing is going to change. You are well prepared and you will go onstage with your technique– not your worry! Enjoy the moment to express your art and hopefully please the audience as well.

I know that the students at our school are under a lot of pressure since they must learn many dances in a relatively short time. There were also two winter breaks in the midst of this period. This causes delays with different students absent etc.  Additionally the advanced level must learn several roles. It is not until the final weeks that they are told the casting. This is great training for a career in a classical ballet company.

theater week

At the theater

That is just a little background about the process leading up to performance week. Teachers know from the start that the time period is a very tight schedule. I have found that over my 32+ years of teaching, that the majority of the students do not realize how little time they have :). Then about two weeks before the shows, they realize it and kick into a focused high gear!

It all comes together. They call that the “magic of theater”. I call it “hard work and satisfaction”!

Below is a video compilation of rehearsals and some backstage footage from our Showcase. I hope you enjoy it! There is footage from “Swan Lake”, “Paquita” and my contemporary ballet “Primavera”. theater week

I did not include the music to “Primavera” on my video as it is copyrighted. However if you wish to listen to part of it, there is a 30 second clip here on Wikipedia that has permission. It is gorgeous music and was my inspiration for my piece. Please let me know what you think by commenting below~ enjoy! Feel welcome to share with your dance friends~

About Sarah Arnold

Ballet blogger, ballet teacher and adult ballerina. Creator of TutusChic and Sans Souci Printables.

2 thoughts on “A behind the scenes peek at theater week!

  1. Theater Week – so tiring! What kind of shoes do you recommend for teachers? My canvas slippers just don’t cut it at the end of a long week. I teach 12 classes a week, plus about five extra hours of rehearsals. By Saturday night, my heels and arches are killing me and I hobble around all Sunday. Do you like the dance “tennis” shoes, or have you tried the Apollo Shocks (I think that’s what they’re called. Socks for dancers with high arch support). Any suggestions? I keep a frozen water bottle in the freezer for rolling under my feet at night which helps. `Melyssa Landrum-Williams

  2. Hi Melyssa~ nice to hear from you again and I can absolutely relate to your situation! I switched from ballet flats (canvas) to jazz tennis shoes. At first my heels used to really hurt so the thick rubber heel helped a lot.

    About 10 years ago, my arches became painful. Since the arch is flexible in those tennis shoes I developed plantar fasciitis every couple of years and again this year. What really helps are the exercises in my e-book which is a collection of my foot exercises. Since we both have flexible , high arched feet there is a need for more strength.

    Now that I assume, you are no longer taking class regularly, your feet may not be as strong. There are some solutions such as the ice bottle and rolling your foot on a ball ( prefer the acupressure ball by Rubz) and even immersing your feet in a bucket of ice water. A podiatrist might prescribe orthotics but now people are resisting that idea and moving towards strengthening and not dependence on appliances. You can temporarily offload the arch stress by taping your arch for support while you strengthen it. That is what I do.

    I no longer teach small children so to answer your question with the shortest reply is– I wear tennis shoes to teach! If I feel that my feet are really aching, I add Super Feet from REI to add to the tennis shoes. I hope this helps and I also hope your feet get better. If they are tight when you wake up on the am, you might have plantar fasciitis. Please let me know what you think or if you need anything else.

Please feel welcome to comment & share!