Thursday, October 9, 2008

Dear Sanna - Piece Struggles

When I first begin working with a new company or new teachers or dancers, I always feel uneasy about certain things at the beginning. Specifically here, I felt very distant from my fellow dancers. I would come in and say hi to people, and they would respond, but nothing more. If there was a group of people talking, it would always be in their language, so it was awkward to join in. It would have been hard enough to invite myself into a conversation in English, but it is impossible to know when to interrupt the gibberish. Even worse was I didn't have much to say.

Other times, I would be speaking alone with one kind soul who would talk to me a little in English, and another native would come over and start speaking their language and it was like I didn't exist anymore. I thought it would never get better, but now I am finding I wish they would speak more in their own language so I could learn.

Another frustration also dealt with language. The teachers NEVER give important information in English. I find myself completely confused after a 5 minute explanation, and it seems like nobody can explain what I should be doing. Many times I would be asked impatiently why I didn't have my shoes on or why I was on the wrong side of the studio, when there was absolutely no reason I should know what to do. Finally I am starting to pick up enough of the language where I can at least decipher what I should do, or I have the intuition to guess. If not, at least I know who to ask or follow. At the beginning, I never thought I would be able to understand one word, but I am finding my vocabulary expanding each day.

I am also learning my teachers, so I am better at picking up the combinations, even when they are unclear (more often than not). I am even used to the oh-so-slippery floors!

Is that what you meant by piece struggles? Hope so hehe


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