Last weekend I had a talented young Ballet Student with good photographic skills and a bright observational mind. Ask me if she could come join us for class at Adelphi. I suggested that after class she watch rehearsal, take pictures and write about what she sees. I thought her observations would be interesting.
Her Name is Jensine Schneekloth. She is the daughter of my good friend Jeanine Levitan and her wonderful step-father Michael Levitan.
So, Jensine will adding her young eyes to this blog.
FROM JENSINE- 1ST INSTALLMENT OF OBSERVING “TOMMY” REHEARSAL.
Last Sunday I took class with Christopher at Adelpi University. A friends came along who dances with me at Huntington Center. To us it is a rare pleasure that we get to take one of his classes, but in a room with professionals and college students makes it that much more special. To us we see it a challenge to work just as hard, and keep up though the entire class. You would think seeing them have such high legs, doing multiple turns, and jumps much larger than our own would put us down. Instead it only inspires us to learn and get better, so one day we might be at that level.
After class I was lucky enough to stay and watch his rehearsal of The Who’s Tommy. To sit and watch a rehearsal with people who take dancing so seriously and passionately is truly inspiring. This picture I took is a piece with two couples that dance perfectly in sync. It’s interesting to see because in class when you are dancing along side the other girls, there is no need to be together, so to see these girls dancing side-by-side imitating each other’s moves takes my breath away.
After seeing both of these dancers perform in LIBT’s production of The Nutcracker, I’m enjoying them both in a rock ballet. In The Nutcracker you get to take on rolls and become someone else but nothing like the characters in Tommy. Sitting on the side you see someone walk off after a piece and they keep their character, turn around and come right back in for the next number. It is almost as if you are transformed into another person for a few hours.
The story of Tommy fascinates me because of the way Christopher has portrayed the characters from the songs, and then has taken them and created such a enthusiastic rock ballet. It seems almost as if the music was made to fit the ballet and not the other way around. You catch your self humming along to the music and drifting into the ballet, as if you are really apart of it all. Drawing you in closer, you can feel the emotions and conflicts on the stage as if I was dancing along beside them. This is one of my favorite works by Christopher. I encourage anyone in the Long Island area to come out and see the show.