The Spaces Between Your Fingers

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This image was taken backstage at one of my performances from 2012. I am pictured further to the left and look to be anticipating my turn to perform. I thought that it was a great image that capture a moment in time and also reflected my state of mind during that time.

Greetings from Backstage,

After a quick warm-up and a laundry list of show notes, we are ready to go out and perform. That is, not until a last minute rehearsal is complete. Rehearsals are some of the most entertaining and enjoyable aspects of performing.  From receiving new choreography to learning from mistakes, watching an entire production evolve right in front of your eyes is exhilarating, all while sharing the experience with some of your closest friends.  The show is set to start soon and the dressing rooms, hallways, and wings of the stage are crowded with people. Dancers are focused with stretching out tight limbs and retaining steps, make-up artists busy putting finishing touches on faces, wardrobe hands stitching burst seams, stage managers screeching orders to staff; backstage is not the place to be if you crave tranquility. Most people would be annoyed by the constant intense chaos, but I enjoy every second of it. Instead of retreating from the frenzy, I join it. I use it as a method to calm and distract me from my nerves, and  it seems to work everytime.  I gossip and laugh with my friends, stretch, do foot and leg exercises, and sneak outside to peek at the growing audience in attendance. Soon after, the stage managers begin to count down till showtime. Over the intercom backstage,  I hear, “30 minutes till places”, “20 minutes till places,” “15 minutes till places”, “10 minutes till places”, “5 minutes till places”, and finally the anticipated, “Places” is called.  My nerves come back again, this time with full force. I have been going through the rehearsal and performance process for over ten years by now, but I still seem to become  nervous right before the show starts. The cast and I file out of the dressing rooms and head towards the stage entrance. Once I hear the stage door close, I know that there is no access back there until my job is done.  The lights dim, the music begins, gradually becoming louder, and the first group of dancers enter the stage. As I wait between the wings of the curtain till it is my cue, I can see the audience. It looks to be a packed house, much larger than I expected.  I listen for my cue in the music and leave the wings behind me as I take the stage.

Backstage

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March 2012
Ferst Center of the Arts, Atlanta, GA

This image was taken backstage at one of my performances from 2012. I am pictured further to the left and look to be anticipating my turn to perform. I thought that it was a great image that capture a moment in time and also reflected my state of mind during that time.

Decade: 2010s
Rating:
Recorded by Ariana Johnson on May 20, 2014
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