Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Ballet's Photo Negitive

In my ever continuing process of learning the dances from the country in which I am, I have started Kathak Classical Indian dance lessons. My first class was last Saturday, and I am one of two beginners (the other being a 5-yr-old). So I started out with her juniors class and watched through the advanced class. Other than having the typical mild distress at being the tallest and oldest beginner there, (as well as the one with no clue) it was a pretty good class.
  • Kathak, like ballet is done up-right, with both hands in front. But in Kathak your hands are chest height.
  • Both have a turn out of the feet. Kathak has only a natural V, nothing like the 180 degrees of Ballet
  • Both have spins. Kathak has spins on the heel while Ballet spins on the toe
  • Kathak is based on rhythm and foot work (step/stamping in a beat)

My personal challenges

  • Making the high pitch slapping noise when I step. I swear our feet are made out of different material. I don't know how they do it. Even when I put most of my weight on the ball of my foot all I can manage is a weak sounding pat. Meanwhile 7 year olds are making the perfect sound without effort.
  • Not moving my hips. . . come one I have big ones.
  • Spinning on my heel. You try getting someone trained to spin on their toes to shift weight and re-balance on the heal. I usually get two good spins before I completely loose balance and almost fall.
  • Not bringing my other foot into posse when I spin. Apparently I turn out too much, Most everything should be done to the front or directly side (At least Sherri Latham would be proud)

On the up side my teacher Divosri, is amazed that I can actually pick up the rhythms and foot work. But I have spent my last two years dancing in Africa. If I couldn't pick up rhythms Sisi would disown me.

For more "offical info" Check out

Or for just General Indian Classical Dance info

As for my adventures they will be continued

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