First of all, let me just say that I thoroughly enjoyed Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Partly because of this scene below where Harry and Hermione dance to relieve the tension. That's such a propaganda coming from me, I know. But dance does things, and one of them is relieving stress.
And I almost cried three times during the movie, something that never happened during any of the Potter movies. And Beedle the Bard really makes me understand why many people think JK Rowling is a genius. I can't wait to see the conclusion!
Now, on to some notes regarding The Dance Within 2: Beyond the Dream that was finally wrapped on November 27th, 2010. The show took place in Gedung Kesenian Jakarta and was the culmination of the hard work of all cast and crew. More on that later.
One thing that I have to highlight is the fact that you have to be prepared for replacements (dancer, crew, etc). Our music technician got ill just a few days before the show and thank goodness the replacement did the whole thing just as well.
I know it would be another thing to replace a dancer, especially the lead dancer, but fortunately that didn't happen. It would be a lot harder because that means compromising many things, including artistic vision.
That being said, honestly, this year's recital leaves a somewhat different impression on me. Everything happened so fast. Last year, I had the opportunity to watch other numbers from the side when I was waiting for my turn. This year, it was all about costume changes. I danced seven numbers with different props that were new to me (cane and Isis wings). And I had to spend the last minutes before the end of the show as a blind-mute.
Honestly, I was worried about my sword routine. Lilith fell so many times during the rehearsal, and she even cut my fingers and palms at one time when I tried to catch her. But I guess I did an okay job as she didn't fall although I was practically blind when dancing in the show.
Unlike The Dance Within, The Dance Within 2: Beyond the Dream is a lot more gloomy and depressive. Yes, there were quite a few happy highlights like the Bollywood number, but in all, I felt gloomy. I played Azrael, the Angel of Death, and in the end I had to kill The Dreamer, the main character. Although the finale took place in Heaven (with "When Love Takes Over" by David Guetta feat. Kelly Rowland, no less), I still feel it was less festive than the first.
Gedung Kesenian Jakarta did a pretty good job with the lighting. We had positive reviews from the audience and from members of the media who attended the event. There are some inputs as well that we need to share during the post-mortem meeting.
But this is what got me on my nerves: the ticket was sold out a week before the show. We even decided to sell the tickets that were intended for the press when they said they wouldn't come. Some people were actually waiting to the very last minute to purchase the tickets. I even took the time to deliver the tickets myself and there was more than one time when I was ready to deliver and I didn't receive any confirmation message whatsoever. So I sold the tickets to someone else and got complaints from the person who was supposed to purchase them first.
I hope next year I won't have to deal with that.
The next thing I'd like to blog about is manners in watching art performances in theatres or art centers.
The first one is of course: do not be late. Dancewave Center has the habit of starting things (quite) on time. The Dance Within started 15 minutes late and The Dance Within 2: Beyond the Dream started 7 minutes late. That was an improvement. Whoever came in fifteen minutes after the first act had begun had to wait until the intermission to be allowed to enter.
The second one is taking photos and videos. Holly Hallelujah... We've specifically told the audience on the ticket, the flier, the playbill, and the voiceover that taking photos and videos are prohibited. We stated that IN TWO LANGUAGES! And yet I still saw people with handycams videotaping the event. We should've confiscated that. It was very, very rude. I promise you, next year, the security will be much more strict. When we say no video and no photo taking, that means no video and no photo taking.
The third one is: READ THE PLAYBILL!! It's theatrical, and sometimes it's not that easy to comprehend what's happening. The playbill helps you to understand the dances and the story-line. Come on, even in Ballet, the playbill serves as a guide to understand the story.
But apart from that, our audience was the loveliest. I sat sandwiched between two very talkative groups (in front of me and behind me) during Bellydance Jakarta's fifth annual recital. And to make matters worse, the woman in front of me kept leaning to the right to talk to her friend during the show, and she raised her hands to take photos of the dancers. Now that was downright rude and inconsiderate.
And oh, this is the best part: thank you, whoever brought small children and taught them to behave. I didn't hear any crying babies or children during my frightening dance.
Our audience dressed well. That was one highlight. Although I couldn't help but notice a foreigner, who happened to be a hip hop dance instructor from another dance institution in Jakarta, sitting with his CAP ON and his FOOT UP on the back of the chair in front of him. This was after the show ended, I know. And he has long legs and Gedung Kesenian Jakarta has little leg room, I know. But come on, Dude. I thought you knew better.
The Dance Within (1 & later 2) has always been about the culmination of hard work from everyone. I believe that's why we refuse to open (or end) the show with a speech and giving flowers or some other type of ego-fest. We were just glad everything was over and we did all the best we could. And the effort was everyone's.
I can't wait for The Dance Within 3.
Lilith & me by Diana T. W.
Cast finale by Si Troy