In the office, we’ve heard anecdotes of students and parents rushing to their teachers and administrators to know their attendance. While being aware of your progress is crucial, regular attendance extends beyond mere record-keeping; it instills a sense of regularity, punctuality, and discipline. After all, missing one class can mean losing a valuable skill!
Becoming a dancer requires consistent practice within the dance studio, Rudolf Nureyev says “When I miss class for one day, I know it. When I miss class for two days, my teacher knows it. When I miss class for three days, the audience knows it.” To excel as a dancer, showing up and actively participating in every class is integral. Each class attended provides an opportunity to observe, learn, and absorb more than what the teacher directly imparts.
Discipline plays a pivotal role in the lives of dedicated dancers, reflected in their punctuality. As Twyla Tharp aptly puts it in “The Creative Habit,” progress often hinges on the simple act of getting up and going out – the difference between advancing in ballet and remaining stagnant.
As you progress in dance or any other activity, your attendance becomes a testament to your dedication and determination. Regular attendance not only keeps you on your toes (literally!) but also helps perfect the skills that ballet demands for flawless execution. Building muscle memory is just one of the many benefits; consistent attendance allows your teacher to understand you, your body, and your dance better, facilitating progress without starting from square one each time.
While external commitments may pose challenges, the dedication of great dancers is notorious for prioritizing dance practice. Though I don’t advocate abandoning other responsibilities, it’s worth questioning if managing time more efficiently or defining priorities could make room for more consistent class attendance and, ultimately, make you a better dancer.
Without a doubt, the path to becoming an accomplished dancer is paved with commitment, dedication, and a steadfast commitment to showing up and giving your best in every class.
Images by Meghana Sastry.