Every other Friday I teach belly dance to a group of women who all have learning difficulties. They’ve been taking classes with me for three years, and the afternoon is generally huge fun. Today was just hilarious.
They are currently learning an edited version of a choreography I learned from my mentor and friend, Emma. They have always loved this piece of music and since performing at our Hipnotic event a couple of months ago they really want to perform again. As they’ve gone through this routine with me several times already I felt that this would be a good one to work on so that they could perform again quite soon. Most of the women who come along also attend drama classes and it’s not uncommon for them to rehearse their drama pieces for a year before they perform them, and dance is no different.
However. Now that we’re *learning it* the fun has gone out of it for them a bit, so I’m keen that they get the fun back, but also that they manage to hit some of the keys points I’ve retained from the original choreography.
The best things about this class is that they are no different from any other beginner level class. I shout out what comes next (quite loudly). There are some who remember more than others. Often there is one person who continues to do something in a very random way. There are inter-group politics that I cannot always work out, but I can see there’s something going on.
But you know what? It’s always fun, and great therapy for me, good exercise for them. If my plan goes ahead then they’ll be performing in May, to a fantastically supportive audience.
And they have requested lessons in how to use zills. Just like any other beginners class, oh my ears!