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Day 34 - 3 days until the performance

Tools in the arsenal of the ballet master:

  • Preparedness and competence
  • Sufficient rehearsal time
  • An even disposition
  • Gummi Bears

We run all of the ballets in program order, cleaning and rehearsing as necessary. Scherzo has a solid run, Mary looks absolutely astonishing in the ballet, marvelous and frightening in her pathos. I really enjoy watching the piece. I love it when the ballets get to a point where I just want to watch. After all, that’s why I choreograph them. Chuck runs Aubade and gets a gummi bear (actually several.) It’s a little less solid than it was on Friday, but nothing to provoke concern.

Peter has dropped off the CD of Armature and Adriana’s section is much improved. This ballet has the most technical concerns to it, Jeff is there and “calls” the blackouts and music cues so everyone can get used to them. Several gummi bears are distributed to calm frazzled nerves.

Horizon looks much better than it did on Saturday. I give at least 30 minutes of the rehearsal over to letting each partnership go off and hammer out some of the tough spots, with me occasionally acting as referee if they’ve hit an impasse. It seems as if I’m doing nothing, but it’s what they seem to need most at the moment, to talk to each other. The timing of the beginning and ends of each movement is gone over, which is where that seemed weakest. The newly choreographed part of the third movement (about a minute and a half before the end) is still unclear, I need to really clean it step by step, which I will do tomorrow.

The run of the ballet looks much better than it probably feels to the dancers, let’s just say all the gummi bears are gone. I’m a little surprised with myself this year, I can’t recall being this calm ever in a previous concert. It could be that I’ve dealt with productions in far worse states than this one, or it could be that I’ve done enough concerts to realize that dancers get very edgy and their behavior gets exaggerated during theater week. It goes with the territory and it sorts itself out. Even so, it feels awfully nice not to internalize their tension, but it also makes me more effective for them if I don’t.

I’m bringing jellybeans for tomorrow’s rehearsal. I think I may have to break out M&M’s and other heavy-duty stuff for the theater.