Monday, January 10, 2011

Dancing in the Dark

This weekend Barry and I went to a ballroom dance with friends.  The wife of the other couple told us she's in rehearsal for an upcoming tap and jazz dance show.  She just bought new tap shoes and attached the taps she's had since the age of 12 for luck.  For one insane moment I considered getting back into tap myself, but then I flashed on one of my past performance traumas and the urge died a horrible death.

I was in my 20's and still living in South Dakota.  I was dancing in a chorus line as part of a charity show for the local Girl's Club.  The grumpy little director and all the costumes came from New York.  I was in two numbers.  In the second dance I wore what looked like a backless red satin swimsuit held up by a single length of ribbon around the neck.  The style of the "dress" meant I couldn't wear a bra underneath; I suppose I could have invested in a pair of pasties or at least used band-aids, but that just didn't occur to me at the time.  You see where this is going, right?  The night of the first performance, I was on stage, doing my thing (to "The Stripper," OF COURSE) when the strap broke.

Fortunately we were dancing with one arm up in the air and one held straight in front of ourselves.  I clamped the straight-out arm to my side, and when we all turned to dance toward the right wing, I just kept going and whisked myself off the stage.  The person who had been next to me cleverly moved over to fill up the gap I had left and all was well (except my blood pressure).  When the show had finished its run, I reviewed my previous performance experiences and decided that not only was I not destined to star in the revival of A Chorus Line, but I should also confine my solo dancing to aerobics class.

So far that decision has served me well.  A part of me is a little envious of my friend's excitement over her upcoming show, but I'm going to take a deep breath and just let it go.  Why tempt lightening to strike a third time?

“I wish I could blame it on the choreography, but it's not a musical. I just had a clumsy moment.” ~Delta Burke

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