All around the world, dance competitions are more frequent than ever. We have Prix de Lausanne, Youth American Grand Prix, just to name a few…
Since when, speaking about art forms, do we hear the word “competition” coming along? Art should be something you do, something you use, to express yourself; not to win over other people.
Call me “old school” but I think that the dance world really is changing. It’s a world were competition is increasing each passing day; a world with more and more professionals and, yet, few really good places. So, of course, everyone has to compete…
I’m not saying that we shouldn’t strive to get better and better each day but what defines a good dancer? What is “better”, the athlete or the artist?
“Dancers are the athletes of God” and, all dance forms, specially ballet, are technically demanding and challenging. A dancer should really be an athlete as well, but not just an athlete in my opinion. And, sometimes, a really good athlete is rated with higher scores than a really good artist. It is really beautiful to see someone with long extensions, high jumps, enormous flexibility and a capacity to turn without stoping… But, when they finish their routine, I am like “is that it?”… Because, for me, that is not dancing. More and more often, we find dance professionals striving for the perfect technique and forgetting the reason we all started to dance in the first place: our hearts! We dance because we love to dance! So, why should we forget this and only work in the physical aspects of dance? Why should we compete to be better athletes than our fellow dancers? Shouldn’t we try to find a balance? A balance between hard physical work and showing the world why we love what we do, putting our hearts out.
Don’t get me wrong, I think physical work is really important, but shouldn’t be the most important aspect in dance, it should be the complement to our artistry and not otherwise.