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Day 5 - Rehearsal

Since we again have a partial cast (no Morgan) I work out of order, doing ideas as they occur to me. A transitional phrase on pizzicato music is first. To me, there are ideas that are the meat of the dance, and then sections that bridge or buttress these pillars. The pizzicato music, about 30 seconds long, introduced a new section and thematic material in the music. It conjured images of rushing forms, of anticipation, and I choreographed accordingly, making the phrase on Mary. I had left a gap of about twenty seconds in the music, a repeat of Frances’ treacherous jumping phrase, and rather bombastic music. I made a different jumping phrase on Adriana. I had her pose, then take two successively larger jumps to a rising phrase in the music, and she did them, showing a crisp fifth position en haut, but that wasn’t what I wanted. “You’re giving me shapes. I want you to direct my attention upwards.” She then produced the breathy abandon I wanted. The passage of an idea from a picture in one’s mind to a movement in someone else’s body is not a direct route. One of the daily small pleasures of choreography is figuring out how to guide your dancers there, and seeing the results. We worked as a group on a segment about a minute later in the work, a sweeping trio that I envisioned rushing about as Morgan danced in another corner. Again, I got to make a “dance-y” phrase full of grands ronds des jambes and attitudes en tournant. It’s as viscerally satisfying an event for the choreographer as well as the audience, a beautiful, lushly danced phrase to beautiful music. The final section choreographed was to the same music that returns later, more fortissimo. I had gauged that this was again a point to insert a theatrical effect, the dancers swirl in then stop dead as the music reaches its climax and rushes past them. They each bow to their imaginary partner and shyly offer him their hands as they walk with him, averting their faces. At this point I choose not to do any more new material, preferring to wait until I have a full cast, and we spend the time reviewing old materials, primarily to allay Frances’ doubts, and it’s successful. She’s much more comfortable after having the time to catch up and figure things out.