A Dancer’s Details: Act 1

  • Kirti Daya

This four-part series goes behind the scenes of a musical cast member, from the audition process to final stage performance. Join in for a weekly rendition of what happens in between!

Click here to read Part 1

Rehearsals were in full swing, and that meant a few things.

First, the cast members had all settled into their own little groups, coming together when need be but only choosing a few to confide in. Our director had a strict “no cliques” policy, but you really can’t help it when certain personality types get along with some and try avoid others. I personally hung out the dancers who preferred to talk about their “outside lives” and how their relationships, work life and everything else were going as compared to those who preferred to use the breaks to complain and moan about other cast members, how difficult the choreography was or about the director’s mood for the day. Some people carry bad energy with them, and to avoid sounding like “that person,” I do feel like that affects my work and so I try not to get involved with them. Sure we had “gossip” sessions if we were frustrated or tired or just pessimistic about something, but we’d always brush it off and carry on. We didn’t really have any other choice.

Second, you know it’s performance season when your body is five hundred different shades of bruise. As a dancer, I’ve gotten used to having ugly feet however I always have to mentally prepare myself for the knee bruises, weird arm marks and everything else that ensues from floor work or partner pieces. To whoever invented sports tape, THE THEATRE WORLD THANKS YOU. Sometimes I wish I could put sports tape on my entire life, that way it would be guaranteed to stay together.

Third, with great productions come great expectations. What am I talking about? People who think that they’re entitled to complimentary tickets of course! Performers very rarely get comps for every show, and even if we do, it’s never enough for the village demanding to see a show for free. Let me put it this way. People who deserve comps are the ones who have driven me to rehearsal, stayed up late helping me fix my costumes, or doing a last-minute errand run for me. If you do not fit into this category, then you do not DESERVE a free ticket. By supporting the artist, you’re agreeing to the fact that the show is worth paying money to see. It’s that simple!

We had reached about midway of rehearsals, and the pressure was beginning to rise. Ticket sales had officially opened, and we were on a steady path to selling out our Saturday night show. People were starting to take notice of the posters and social media posts, but the press releases and flash mobs were yet to come.