It has been my privilege to be a performing arts teacher for more than 20 years now! I love the performing arts. As a performer having the chance to express yourself using your own body and voice is a great feeling. Watching live theater and dance is also so exciting! Anything can happen! We are very lucky here in the Twin Cities to have such a vibrant theater community. There are so many opportunities to watch live performances and be a part of one if you would like.
Recently I had the opportunity to perform in the musical, Pippin with Ashland Productions in Maplewood. I haven’t performed in about 10 years, not including small concerts and weddings etc. It was a wonderful experience. First, I had the chance to work with old friends and meet new ones. Second, teacher Randi was the choreographer and it was great to work with her on another level. Her choreography was beautiful. Finally I had the chance to practice what I teach on a daily basis.
I am a big believer in that if you are a teacher you must be able to do what you teach. If you are physically able you must continue to take classes and work on your own skills. It is really helpful when you have to demonstrate something or just understanding what it is your are teaching from the inside out.
It was surprising to me how much of what I used to do came back naturally. Being on stage feels natural to me. The smells and sounds of the theater feel like home. It is a true comfort.
Luckily part of why it felt natural is because I have been keeping tabs on my skills throughout the years. I still take dance classes and voice lessons on a regular basis just in case an opportunity like this should come up. That reminds me of a master class that I took in New York from Ann Reinking many years ago. She said to the class that you can’t pick your opportunities but you can be ready when they come. Singing and dancing are my passions so it is not that difficult for me to keep them up. I was ready!
What did surprise me however was how nervous I was! I would be back stage waiting for an entrance and I would be so afraid that I would forget my lines. I can practice my skills but I haven’t been practicing them in front of a large audience. This show gave me the chance to practice settling my nerves again.
This is why I think performing is such an important part of development whether it is through the performing arts or in public speaking etc. Learning how to be confident in front of others is a great skill to have. All of our Mayer Arts classes always have performances at the end of the sessions. Some have large shows in a theater and others in the dance room. Children need to have that experience doing something for an audience. It builds their confidence and self-esteem.
People often asked if I was going to keep performing now that I came back. I certainly hope so. I know I can’t perform on a regular basis like I used to. Being in a show is a huge commitment and I missed my family so much. It definitely won’t be another 10 years that is for sure!
Many children love to dance and sing and play pretend. Mayer Arts classes give children the perfect opportunity to try a performing arts class and see if it feels right for them. We have classes and camps that will let your child explore in a safe, encouraging environment. We have student who take a class for fun and others who continue with our program for years!
Take a look at my videos for more on how performing arts classes are beneficial for your children. There are so many ways the performing arts improve our lives! Join us today!