Why does trying something new always feel so scary?! Every day I prove to myself that I can achieve new things. And still there are those moments, when I want something so bad that I get annoyed by myself for not having the guts to just go for it.
Recently I decided to get out of my comfort zone one more time and to dance in a way I haven’t danced before.
Video below ↓
Most of my pole dance performances have been mainly lyrical so far – with rather slow and soft movements. Why? It comes more natural to me (which became an excuse not to do it differently) and I find it easier to extend the moves smoothly, when I’m not rushing through them.
At the same time, I am starting to get seriously annoyed by myself for always being such a softie, especially when I don’t want to be a softie. The people who know me, have heard me complain about this several times. I watch a lot of dance videos and I like the impact of energetic staccato moves. I’d love to be able to move that way as well!
After I studied some more dance videos I decided to simply try it out for last week’s showcase of my pole dance studio. And here’s what came out of my experiment:
If you are wondering what helped me and what hindered me in the process, these are my 3 major takeaways:
- #1: EXTEND YOUR MOVES! Being clean with your movements allows others to see and understand your movements better. So far, nothing new! But I am not talking about pointed toes and straight legs her. I’m talking about extending the moves in their execution. This is the most essential thing I learned through dance classes and a #1 mistake I see other pole dancers do in their routines and performances. As I learned in my last pole dance performance, this holds true for fast pace choreographies as well. Moving fast doesn’t mean cutting and rushing through the moves. It means extending them to the moment of drop (accent) in the music, where you want to add your sharp accent moves. This should be the focus during the preparation training.
#2: IMMERSE YOURSELF IN YOUR CHARACTER! Make it clear for yourself first, what is it that you are representing in your dance. Elegance, sexiness, sadness, power? Here’s an example: my character was femme fatale – confident and powerful, a bit crazy, but at the same time sensual and sexy. The lyrics helped me build her, but I also used my freedom of interpretation to adjust her, so I feel comfortable with the whole piece. That way I could identify with her, her emotions and motives. Right before I went on stage, I repeated to myself a quote from the song and I got back to the original leading emotion of the piece. I seized it and held it until my dance was over.
#3: IT’S ALL ABOUT THE ENERGY of your performance. People wouldn’t remember the mistakes you’ve done, but they’ll remember the energy of your performance, when they think back. So, focus on the feeling and your character when you are on stage, rather than on technique. My last pole dance performance wasn’t the cleanest one but it left an overall powerful impression through the sharp accents on point with the music. This was also the first time I tried to express feelings through facial expression, which I find to be the most difficult part in performing. But I also found out, that it comes naturally, if you are sufficiently immersed in your character.
Have you done a particular pole dance performance or choreography lately? Or are you working on one? What are you finding the most difficult about it? Write down in the comments or send me a mail.
Junior Jackson says
Hello 🙂 what a great website!! I saw one of your tutorials on YouTube and now I’m hooked!! I had a performance last month and it was tragic. My biggest demon is that I have NO FLOW. I’m a powerhouse when it comes to strength moves and contortions but I can’t string the movements together to save my life. I even have a strong stage presence but my transitions are so messy that I find it hard to sit through my own pieces. I also make the mistake of rushing through my moves so quickly that I have run out of routine before my song finishes. I’m always afraid of the crowd being bored. To be honest, a lot of my problems come from my own head, I think they (the audience) won’t like my routine, won’t think it has that wow factor. I end up changing my routine so many times, even the night of!! I also can’t stay focused on one move, once I see something new I’m like, I GOTTA DO THAT NOW!! Which makes it hard to keep my routines consistent. I know this is a lot, but if you have any tips I’d greatly appreciate it. Please don’t stop making videos, they have been so helpful, Thank you : )
Elisabeth Schärer says
try closeing your eyes and dont think about the audience. or the other option, keep eye contact with your audience all the time, stair at them!