Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Easing back into things

Having nothing to rehearse or perform from May until mid-September has been tough, so I'm finally doing something I've been meaning to do for quite some time: A few weeks ago I started a bellydance workout class to help build up my stamina a little preparatory to rejoining my last teacher's advanced class after a hiatus of over 10 (!) years.

We were barely halfway thru my first class when I remembered how very much fun middle eastern dancing is and realized how much I'd missed it. The Chief's been encouraging me to keep at it, seeing how much fun I'm having, but he doesn't realize how dangerous that could be. This hobby can eat even more time than theater - first it's class one night a week, then the occasional weekend workshop, then saving up for a weeklong dance camp, plus any time spent rehearsing and performing with a troupe, going to see other dancers perform... It's not cheap, either - in addition to the classes, the workshops can run into some money, especially those out of town (meals & lodging), not to mention the cost of costuming, props, dinner at those restaurants which have dancers, and of course music.

That could be a big expense - right now nearly all my stuff's on vinyl. I'm not eager to buy all those albums all over again! On the other hand, if I duplicate my vinyl & cassette collection on CD, I can load it all into my iPod, and I can also use iTunes to make my performance compilations - MUCH easier than taping my albums onto cassette, then recording select bits of each onto a performance tape, and it's bound to be less time-consuming. And of course CDs have the timings of each cut - no more guessing whether all those "about 3 minutes"es will add up to something too long for a 'gram, or longer than the time alloted for my slot in the workshop show. Fortunately, I've still got a stock of performance tapes to keep me going while I duplicate (and add to) my collection.

I also realize that when I was doing this fairly seriously (classes, out-of-town workshops, bellygrams, the occasional restaurant gig), I was single and unattached. This time I've got a husband to come home to, who might want me to choose my dance workshops based on other things to do in the area (such as antique shops or historic homes to visit). Or maybe he'll find a weeklong woodworking class that runs concurrent with a dance camp I'm interested in. I can just see it; each of us loading up our respective togs and toys, exchanging goodbye kisses and telling each other "Have fun at camp, sweetie - see you next week!" :D

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