Monday, October 20, 2014

A Farewell to NYCB's Wendy Whelan

As many of you may know, yesterday, October 18,  Principal dancer Wendy Whelan did her final performance with the New York City Ballet. I have known about Wendy for many years now. Whenever I watched performances of Wendy Whelan on youtube I would always be moved by the freedom she had. The performance was sold out with in minutes. This is because she can tell a story like no one else can and her dancing is absolutely mesmerizing.

Wendy Whelan in "By 2 With & From" 
Courtesy of The New York Times

On September 29, my dad showed me this article and told me it was about Wendy Whelan. Of course I was so excited to read about her. However, I was disappointed to find out that she would be retiring. This continues to be my favorite article because it is one I can relate to. In the article it says that she has declined the role of dancing the Sugar Plum Fairy. In an interview she once said "that she didn't feel pretty enough."
Wendy Whelan as the Sugar Plum Fairy
Courtesy of Dance View Times

When I said in my first paragraph I love the freedom she had when she danced. She didn't alway have that. She has insecurities just like all of us.It wasn't until she was thirty that she learned to become relaxed in her dancing. "I ... learned to detach my claws from dancing," she told the New Yorker. This is something that I think a lot of young dancers need to learn, myself included. No teacher can teach you this. You can have the most beautiful technique, and of course you need to have that, but if you're not relaxed and having fun you're just going to blend in with the crowd. Wendy didn't learn this until age 30. If you can start applying this even to barre you will improve so much. We all have insecurities, but when you forget them that is when you really shine.

If you wish to read the full article click on this.

Look at all those flowers!
Courtesy of The New York Times

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