Today Nina taught class for us and a group of youth dancers at the National Center for Culture and Performing Arts. They are trained in ballet technique and have only had contact with modern dance through workshops and guest choreographers from places like France, Finland, and the U.S. There were three young women and a young man and they were all incredibly open and sponge-like in their absorption of Nina’s movement style and words of wisdom. It was a wonderful experience to dance with them and speak with them about what it is like to dance in Amman, Jordan. For them, dance is not a career option. They do it because they love it. It is a hobby to which they dedicate the majority of their free time. One dancer commutes to her university one-hour each way every day and still finds time to get to the studio for classes and performances in addition to her studies.
Today was especially enjoyable for me because I work with the Youth Ensemble at Shawl-Anderson Dance Center in Berkeley. The group consists of 8 young women who spend three days a week taking classes in modern dance and ballet and rehearsing the work of various Bay Area choreographers. They too dance because they love it. They make sacrifices in order to dance and perform, and somehow they manage to maintain high academic achievement, foster close relationships to friends and family, and be beautiful young women in the world. I was struck today by the commonalities between the young dancers in Berkeley, CA and those halfway around the world in Amman, Jordan. Dance is truly a language of its own. It is a passion that people share in any country in any situation in any time in any way. It is inspiring to see these young people pursuing dance and working so hard and I am excited to see how dance changes and is changed by them.
hi mom and dad 🙂