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Some days I feel totally on and everything goes how I want it to, and other days, I just fall apart. It seems like those days I'm constantly battling with my body to make it work properly, and nothing looks like how it does when professionals do it. My turns are especially inconsistent, and in the past 3 weeks or so I haven't even been able to do a triple en dehors on my good side, which I thought I was really improving before the holiday break.


With my first audition (SAB) just around the corner next Monday, I'm totally worried that I'll just have a spastic day and look terrible. I don't know if they'll be able to see through having a bad dancing day and see my potential, or if I'm running out of time for schools to be looking for potential (I'll be 16 this summer). I feel that if I want to get an apprentice position after high school, I should be at a point where I'm working on refining my technique, and sometimes I feel like that's what I'm doing, and other days I feel like I have a hundred technical flaws that I need to correct. Everytime I have a bad day, I get completely down on myself and lose hope that I'll ever make ballet a career, let alone a successful one.


Does anybody else feel this way? How can I look at a bad class in a more positive way?

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Don't borrow trouble.


If something hasn't happened yet, don't imagine what will happen when it does. Sowing the seeds of that kind of self-doubt will almost certainly increase the likelihood of its happening. Of course, there will be on days and off days, but there's no reason to fret or worry about them beforehand. You don't go into a class saying, "Now, today, I'm going to fail miserably!" At least you don't if you're a well person. Take one thing at a time, one day at a time. If you have had a bad class, then resolve to fix what is bad in the next class, but don't make self-fulfilling prophecies by expecting to fail!

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Guest pointedancer518

I know that saying I was a competition dancer probably won't go over well with some people. But I was and I did a pointe solo one year. It had many turns and other steps where I had to be very solid, but nerves got the better of me one day, and I did terribly. I fell out of every turn and visibly shook the whole dance. I expected to receive a very low score, but to my surprise, I got a higher score than in previous competitions! My teacher said that even though I though I didn't do well, the technique was still there and I never let myself get upset.


Even if you are having a horrible dancing day, keep a smile on your face. If nothing else, you will have shown everyone that you love to dance!

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I have that feeling as well. It's really hard to keep a positive outlook when you have bad days. Something that helps me is to spend 15 minutes or so before class stretching and clearing my mind. Try to focus and think positively, think about what you need to improve and then do it, but don't get down on yourself when you fail!

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Well, I went to the SAB audition yesterday and it went pretty well, so I'm pleased with that. My turns were ok and I finally relaxed after barre (I get really tense in my neck and shoulders when I'm nervous), and I enjoyed it and took it like a master class. I also had a lot of fun trying to look like a Balanchine dancer at 5'2"! One of my teachers is Balanchine (former NYCB dancer and Kyra Nichols' mom!), so I pretended I was taking her class.

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Some people do better under pressure. I know I do. When I'm having a rough day, I try to just relax and hold my center so I don't fall all over everywhere. In an audition, just have a good time. If you just can't get a certain combination (it happens!) do it the best you can at that moment in time. Work it out later after the audition so that you show yourself you can do it. Just don't get stuck on small mistakes like almost falling out of a pirouette. Most of all just know that the world won't collapse because of one off day! Good luck :)

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Well said, Banana Feet! I find that I beat myself up way too much if I fall out of turns or can't get a combination, too, but then if I just tell yourself to relax and brush it off. You will probably do better then because you are relaxed and not tense.

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Well, i was happy with the audition (haven't heard back yet but it's only been a couple of days), but I'm back into a slew of bad classes. Technique on Tuesday was ok, but pas de deux was weaker than last week. Then on Wednesday I was doing ok at barre, but I started falling apart in center and I got really frustrated with the grand allegro, and after that I just couldn't pull myself together very well for pointe. Today, I felt pretty good at barre, and then adagio at center was a mess, and later I got really annoyed in pointe because I was wearing hard shank shoes for the first time and I felt like I couldn't get over them completely, but my teacher told me to stop trying to bend them, and they were really uncomfortable and I had trouble turning. :thumbsup: I feel like I'm having more bad classes than good recently, and I feel stuck in a rut. I guess this sort of might belong in the buddy board, but I don't have access because I haven't asked yet.

I think maybe I should take more classes a week, but that might just make my problems worse.

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Lauren, that kind of frustrating, while not unusual, is really such a waste of energy. All of your energy is going into negative thinking instead of just doing the work. Everyone has good and bad days, but getting down on yourself becomes a habit that goes nowhere. Part of it might be senioritis, if you are at that place where you are feeling that it is time for you to be ready and you might not quite be there. Get over it. Not everyone is company ready by their senior year in high school, and it is NOT a crime or even the end of the world if you are not. That is very young to be at that place, and most people are really not ready emotionally any more than they are technically. Give yourself a break and realize that it takes a while to grow up, and it takes longer to be a dancer. If you need another year or two, so be it. Take advantage of the time and get yourself prepared, whether it is in a ballet academy or a good college program. Just get over yourself and stop dwelling on every pirouette that doesn't work. Put your energy into making it work instead of convincing yourself that you can't do it or everything is bad.

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