Category: The Dancing


The midterm surprise was “précipité” which is not in the ballet dictionary (Gail Grant) but means “to precipitate.” It looks kind of like a mini glissade and it’s a step that prepares you for another, like a grande jeté. 

I figured it was time to talk about dance class, specifically Ballet! I’ve survived the first eight weeks of college and taking Ballet five days a week with the addition of some other styles.

The other word that got me caught up was “shortened”…I totally blanked! Of course, once I saw the answer I thought, “good one dummy!” The french term for “shortened” is Raccourci and technically not of the Cecchetti Method but of the French School of Ballet; yes there’s a difference.

My Ballet II professor is right, my pedagogy book is going to be huge. I can’t help but be wordy. I figure the more I write the higher chance of either getting partial credit if I’m wrong or extra credit if I’m right. There is a method to my madness.

I think my answer for précipité might get me full credit and not partial, although I didn’t write “to precipitate” I said that it was a step that precipitated another which is exactly what it is. Who knows, I’ll find out next week. Next week I’ll know my grades in all my classes, I’m not going to lie, I’m a little anxious!

The eight Cecchetti Body Positions

Croisé Devant
Quatrieme Devant
A la Seconde
Quatrieme Derriere
Croisé Derriere

I need to message my friend that knows the proper key strokes to get the accents on my letters correctly. I know them I just don’t know what key strokes are required. I’ve looked it up a few times and not found the proper way of doing it. Seems like a simple thing to do, but I guess not.

A combo across the floor I use to teach…From the corner, B+ (upstage foot,) balancé x 2, tombé, pas de bourrée, glissade, grande jeté. I was wrong, it’s not a glissade, it’s a précipité!


At some point I have to figure out how to find some time and relax. School is stressful, of course, but the constant worry that I’m going to forget something is taking its toll. I have nine classes totaling 17 credit hours. Yes, you read that right…NINE classes!

  • Ballet I (1 credit)
  • Ballet II (2 credits)
  • Biology (4 credits)
  • English (3 credits)
  • Ensemble I (1 credit)
  • Fundamentals of Theater (3 credits)
  • Improvisation I (1 credit)
  • Jazz I (1 credit)
  • Modern I (1 credit)

I keep telling myself, “just one week at a time,” and so far that has gotten me through the first six weeks of school. But midterms are literally less than two weeks away and I have to admit, I’m a little freaked out. To say I’m a classic overachiever would be a huge understatement. Who I’m trying to impress is beyond me because I’m an adult and I don’t have to do this. I had a career I could go back to if I wanted to so I don’t need to torture myself. Dancing is my joy though, I have to have it in my life in some meaningful way and this is the healthiest way for me to get it back into my life.

There’s a plan, something in the future, a goal for me to attain. NO! I’m not telling you what it is; it’s a secret…Shhhhh!

School is enjoyable, for the most part. Of course, we never like all of our professors, and that’s fine. I’ll only have to have this professor for ten more weeks then we can part ways and I’ll know not to take one of their classes again. This pace is testing my body and what it’s capable of and in classic overachiever style, I get frustrated when it doesn’t want to cooperate with me. I have to remind myself regularly that I’m still healing; it hasn’t been a full year since the heart transplant. The thought of slowing down does enter my mind, weekly, but I can’t. Time is ticking away and I’d like to make the most of it.

It’s Been Awhile

It’s been awhile since I’ve written anything here, however; I’ve been doing plenty of writing elsewhere, in college!

After my last trip to Salt Lake City for a scheduled biopsy to check for rejection, I started school, again, almost 30 years after I started college the first time. The first time I majored in something much more practical than I am now; my major is Dance Performance. I don’t have any plans to run off to New York to become a professional dancer at my age, but I do intent to teach. I’ve been teaching ballet for a long time, but I felt that now would be the perfect time to go back to school and actually get a degree in it.

It’s been stressful and my body hurts, but I’m enjoying it; all the dancing is amazing! Thankfully I’m a little ahead of the game right now in that I know a lot of the ballet vocabulary already, but as I move to the more advanced classes that will change, I’m sure. Regardless, I’m making my flashcards like my professor has advised and I run thru them every night just to make sure I have them down and I know the movement (even if I can’t actually do it!) I have to keep notes on the combination for each class or I’m sure to forget, but I am surprised that I’ve been able to retain them by memory pretty well so far. I’m sure that will get more difficult as well.

I feel a little bit strange being one of the oldest students (there is one student in the department older than me,) and basically being old enough to be most of my classmates mother. I’m hoping that will change over time. Who am I kidding though? When have I ever really fit in anywhere?