Friday, May 28, 2010


The Wiyos of Oz!!!!!

In the last post I mentioned that a tour with The Wiyos was fast approaching and our spring concert would be up and running again. Well, we just wrapped our final show and I am staying up late buzzing about all that I have learned from this experience. We went on the road...and not the glamorous road, the REAL road. There was nothing fancy about this trip. We went to small towns and did it the way it is done in the real world. The dancers were the crew AND the performers. We stayed up late in uncomfortable buses. I have never tried to find so many different ways to sleep in one tiny square seat.

The work was tiring and being away is always exhausting, but the experience is really priceless. The show was such a success and playing for an audience of complete strangers is intensely rewarding.

Every dancer should perform with LIVE MUSIC at least once! It changes everything, absolutely everything, about the way you approach movement.

I have experienced what it is like to build a character and expand that role. I know now what it means to find something new in every performance. In a show that is repeated so many times, you have to experience something new or the performance will become stale. Within this last month alone, something has clicked with me internally about being onstage. I now know how to be entirely in the moment. Stage presence. That elusive "thing" that cannot be taught has finally found its way inside of me. Something happened during a performance. It clicked and I cannot explain it, but I get it.

I am buzzing. I am scatterbrained and buzzing about my own little self discoveries and performance experiences. Learning and growing as an artist is the most exciting part about this crazy career choice. No one likes to plateau and I am ready to start climbing again....

Wednesday, May 12, 2010


I had one of "those" performances last night. It is the end of the semester, my body, my mind, my everything is exhausted. I gave myself a warm up and worried endlessly about the strained muscle in my leg. I thought that last night was going to be a terrible performance by me. I gave everything I had anyways.

A friend of mine is graduating and for the first time in my career at Wichita State, I was given a solo. Politics rule everything and solos are saved for the same people....over and over. I was finally given my chance to shine. There are those performers that are flawless. Everytime you watch them dance it is a pleasure because they move with such ease. They are given solos and leads because you never worry about their ability to pull it off. They are safe. I am a different kind of dancer and performer. From the day that I started at WSU, I have had to prove myself. I started at the very bottom. My name was forgotten. I was forgotten. BUT, I fought my way up. Between working hard in class and taking all of the understudy positions offered to me, I was finally being remembered. Leads are still given to the same people and it will always be like this, but I think I prefer my place. I am full of surprises...for everyone else as well as myself.

Last night I put all of my technique, heart, and acting abilities into two minutes. When I left the stage, for the first time, I received applause for my performance alone. I am a modest person, and a shy person. I love to show people what I do, but I do it for me not for the attention. Hearing that applause that sounded so genuine was incredible and I have never felt more thankful for anything. This is what I was meant to do and I am finally getting the chance to do it.

The biggest reward was hearing reactions to my performances. I was able to move people to tears with just a performance. This is what art is supposed to be. For the first time I really feel like I am a performer. It is powerful to know that I can change how people feel just by dancing. It isn't about the attention or compliments. It is about this energy, and self-discovery. I exposed myself and became completely vulnerable and that is what it takes. Now, I can feel that.

Artists and performers have careers full of ups and downs. It is part of why we love what we do. We climb a little bit and then we sit at that plateau for while before we struggle to be enlightened further. We need the struggle and the climb. So that is the story of my latest self-discovery. I hope everyone gets the chance to discover something hidden inside of them because the feeling is so important for a performer. I have a renewed spirit and energy that is pushing me now. I can feel myself climbing again and I don't want to stop! My home is the stage and I can't wait to be there again...and again...and again...

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

The Wiyos on TOUR!

The show closed a little over a month ago and school resumed just as it always does. Classes become monotonous and summer always seems just out of reach. Without any warning, the last week of classes has arrived and once again, my college days have gone by in a flash. Thankfully, dancing will continue even after classes are done. Summer is always an exciting time and this summer in particular should be an experience to remember.

The Wiyos is coming back! The process for the show was less than thrilling and the stress of everything being pulled together kind of takes over. Now that we have all had a chance to separate from the show, I am ready to bring it back! Three shows have been added around the state of Kansas. The perfect setting for the classic tale of Oz...with a twist of course. The Wiyos (band) will be making the trip back as well. This tour should be loads of fun and I can't wait to perform again!

Summer at White Mountain College Dance Festival. I am doing it. I am going to go away for three weeks in the summer and dance with complete strangers. Life is about taking chances and making changes. This should be a great way to make connections, new friends, and learn about myself as a performer. I know very little about the program and am feeling nervous, excited, apprehensive, and thrilled all at once!

My last semester of college is next fall. This is my last week of my last spring semester. A year from now, I will be done with my undergraduate degree. Where did all of the time go? The rest of this year is too exciting to worry about all of that!