Friday, May 25, 2012

Happy Dance Friday #99 - SYTYCD Season Nine Flexes Creative Muscles


Does my Second Life avatar think she can dance? Still too soon to tell, but So You Think You Can Dance is back for season nine, and it's got me thinking.

While watching the New York and Texas auditions last night, it hit me why I love this show with such a fierce passion. Clue is right there. Fierce passion. Australian dancer Daniel Baker fell in love with the US as a child, and became a ballet dancer so he could get a US visa (and bonus points to him for understanding that one book can change a whole life.) Another dancer confessed to training "like a lab rat" to perfect his ability to flip over objects. Yet another didn't need to tell us that his dance interpreted the poignant loss of his dear friend in the 9-11 attacks; his body told us the story in the pure language of emotion. I greatly appreciate that this season, at least so far, has been focusing on the truly excellent dancers, and their passion shines bright.

We've all seen the other kind, those who, and I'm not naming names, state that their greatest ambition is "to be a celebrity," are twentysomethings who are convinced they know more than seasoned dancers with decades of combined experience, champions in their field, and in the case of Li'l C, can honestly say that they are the co-originator of a wildly popular dance style. Ugly attitudes do not impress anybody. Phenomenal artistry does.

I love SYTYCD because it shows artists in love with their art, whether classically trained or self taught, who push themselves to the limits of their knowledge base, and in doing so, come away with a whole slew of new tools for their artistic toolbox.

My very favorites, though, are the ones who know exactly who they are and bring us into their world, like flapper-obsessed Amelia Lowe. Maybe it's the strong connection to a bygone era, maybe it's that authorial voice is big on my mind lately or that my current heroine is a dancer, but all of the really good auditions from last night sent me away from the tv with a spring in my step and that burning passion to get some sleep and then pound some keys. We writers may not get a stage and an auditorium filled with our cheering peers (but sitting across a hotel dining room table from an editor or agent is pretty sweet, too,) and I think I'm safe in saying the majority of us are not staggeringly fit twentysomethings, but other than that, it's the same. We channel our burning passion through words, while they channel through movement, and the emotions we have the privilege of being able to touch are the same.

How are you going to flex your creative muscles today?

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