Practically perfect in every way

A few years ago,  I settled into a studio on a cool Tuesday evening, eagerly awaiting a ballet class.

So I was a bit surprised when a different teacher walked in to teach a different class entirely: modern.

Uh-oh. My mind quickly evaluated my choices: Do I stay? Or do I make a gracious exit and apologize for my mistake? The fear of appearing rude overwhelmed my fear of the unknown. I looked over my shoulder to the pianist in the corner and mouthed "I've never taken this class." "You'll be fine," he mouthed back over the 5-foot grand piano.

"I want everyone to make more mistakes," my teacher confided to me as I fumbled through my first-ever modern dance class. "I don't know where we get this idea that we have to be perfect when we dance."

"Ballet teachers," I said.

Like Parisians are fairly intolerant of imperfect attempts to speak French, ballet teachers are bred to be intolerant of imperfection, period.

Go to a class that doesn't preach technique.


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