Neverland

Hello all!

It’s no secret that a huge part of my love for performing arts revolves around,well…performing. My school doesn’t have too many performances yearly, just one day’s worth, to be exact, so this one day a year tends to be extra special. This year, we presented Neverland, an original continuation of  J.M. Barrie’s Peter Pan.

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With my 4 year-old class: the pixie dust faeries.

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When I wasn’t doing someone’s hair, pinning crowns on dancers’ heads, or helping with a quick change in the wings, I managed to snap a few shots backstage. It’s the culmination of almost a year’s worth of steady work; this year, I was able to test out my story-telling abilities a bit more, which turned out to be quite fun! When it comes to creating, I’ve discovered that the music and the dancers can make or break the whole process. Things that seemed initially daunting tended to fall into place with these two well-matched ingredients. We also often say that the process of producing a show is quite a bit like a train, consistently gathering momentum. At a certain point, there’s not much you can do aside from stepping back to admire the end result. Sure, there are always things I wish I could tweak and adjust, but it’s strangely refreshing to be able to let things be once we get into the theater. After all, if someone isn’t pointing their feet/looking up/straightening their knees by now, chances are that stopping a dress rehearsal to discuss minutiae isn’t going to help.

Despite being incredibly proud and relieved after a successful show, I tend to experience a huge let down afterwards. Going from daily rehearsals and being constantly occupied with the details of a show to…nothing, can be challenging. Part of the beauty of dance is that it’s entirely ephemeral- each performance, each moment in rehearsal is unique and can’t quite ever be recaptured. This being said, I’m sure you can see why the end of a performance could bring a bit of melancholy along with it. Luckily, it doesn’t tend to last long.

Next year will mark my studio’s 25th anniversary, and I’m certain we’ll have something extra special planned. I’m not quite sure what that will be yet, but I think it’s important to have a new project, a new adventure to look forward to! It certainly helps take some of those post-show blues away. I’m so proud of my students, and know the next year holds something exciting.

As for now… I’m going to the beach!

EVA♥

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From Studio to Studio- an Interview

Hi everyone!

I’ve been here, over-sharing my personal and professional life on Watch Me Juggle for quite a while now. I’ll admit that I’ve dabbled with applying to the occasional freelance writing gig here and there, but not much ever came of it.

Well… I was somehow able to talk my way into letting the ballet company I work for write for their blog. The conversation went something like this:

Me: “Oh, I love writing! I have a little blog where I talk about ballet, teaching, and all the things that I do/eat on a weekly basis.”

Them: “Well, if you ever want to write things for our blog you can.”

Me: *falls over*

….

That’s the very glamorous story of how my writing ended up not just on my little corner of the internet. Needless to say I was very excited about it. As the title of my blog suggests, not only did a submit my writing for a post, it happened to be a post containing my very first interview ever. I decided to sit down with one of my favorite people, dancer Erin Yarbrough, who made such a huge impression on me as my teacher years ago. She’s one of the main reasons I still dance today. Turns out, all you really need is one or two people to really believe in you. Lucky me, I ended up working alongside her in the very same studio I grew up dancing in. And I still learn from her! Pretty cool, right?

You can read my interview with her hereon the Smuin Ballet website. If you ever find yourself in San Francisco Bay Area, make sure you check them out! (I’m not shamelessly promoting my own company here, or anything.)

In other, incredibly exciting new, I got to take company class with the dancers of Smuin just the other day. Had you told my young self that I would be doing this one day, I would have frankly told you you were full of crap.

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Look! It’s a picture of Erin & I. 

 Since my transition to teaching almost daily ballet classes, I haven’t gotten much of a chance to take class as much as I would like. To put it bluntly, I felt totally out of shape. I was just glad I didn’t fall on my face in front of everyone. It made what promised to be just an average day an amazing day. Often I forget just how lucky I am to work in a field I’m so wholeheartedly passionate about. Just the other day, one of my students asked me if I get paid to teach them ballet. I told her I do, but sometimes I forget that it’s my job. I couldn’t ask for better.

EVA♥

A Week in Photos

Hello everyone!

It’s been a while since Watch Me Juggle has seen me- I’ve had the craziest week of all this last week. I’m the absolute worst at saying ‘no’ to projects, so almost every day has been substitute teaching during the day, and picking up extra ballet classes to teach at night. That’s almost 12 continuous hours of standing/running around to the tune of “Miss Eva! Miss Eva! MISS EVA!” It’s really rewarding work, but I’m honestly proud of myself that I got through it. It’s not easy, by any means. Working in public schools has really renewed my appreciation for teaching dance. As much as I love working with the kids in the local schools, it’s truly my goal to be able to throw myself entirely into dance- whether that be running a company or a school, or teaching. It was something I dreamed of doing as a kid, and being able to be creative on a daily basis is truly a blessing.

Oh…and I also got another new job, that happened as well.

*cue the bad juggling*

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 Just throw all the balls into the air, and keep them there. That’s apparently my M.O.

Here are some snapshots from my week:

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Let’s all just take a moment to appreciate these lemon ricotta pancakes. Wow! I only made it about half-way through these.

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On Friday, I had a little time for yoga in the park with the kindergarteners I was teaching for the week. We weren’t sure if we would be able to do it, given the recent weather’s propensity for downpours, but the sun came out just in time. It was wonderful to see them all jump into something new, and like it. I had an amazing brunch the other day with a long-lost girlfriend of mine, and I think we have many standing blow-out appointments in our future together. Despite my crazy week, I also managed to make it out to Hawthorn in San Francisco for cocktails. And, by cocktails I mean reliving my college days by taking shots of tequila. I (embarrassingly enough) spent most of my Saturday shopping, and was in desperate need of a red bull by the end of the day. The trick is just to not sit down! Poof! Instant energy!

Anyway, I can’t say enough amazing things about the supportive people in my life. It’s so heartening to know that I have wonderful people who will back me up, under any circumstances. When things get overwhelming, as they can do sometimes when you have three jobs, it’s important to be able to accept a helping hand. It’s also equally important to “pay it forward,” when the opportunity presents itself.  I’m a firm believer in an honest, kind word. I know how those simple things can perk up my day, so I try to keep it moving full-circle.

Now that the craziness has died down, I’m hoping to be back on my regular posting schedule, and have many fun things planned in the upcoming weeks to share. Here’s to adventures, and more adventures!

Hope this finds you well, dear readers.

EVA♥