The Joffrey California Tour In Pictures (part 2)

For part 1, click here!

Friday 03.11.11 @ 8:00 PM
San-Diego (San Diego Civic Theatre)
Age of Innocence
Here we are in San diego, and we are starting to feel the weight of the tour on our shoulders.  The schedule is heavy but necessary for us, and we can't slow down but in fact have to be better.  There is something important for us to remember in this economy. It's all about keeping going because it's the arts that are always the unsafe arena, the first thing to plunge when a recession happens.  The Joffrey is doing well for such a bad financial time, and it is very important to keep it that way.
We are not far from the theatre, but the walk seems long.  We get ourselves together one last time, the curtains goes up, and here we are.  I'm proud to say I'm part of the Joffrey, and we are all performing our hearts out.....
The Civic Theatre is beautiful.  It's a huge house, with people standing on their feet at the end.  We all take a look at each other before we begin to take our bow, faces smiling but the fatigue is showing.  The curtain finally goes down, people are still clapping and screaming bravo, and the company is still holding hands for a split second longer.....we did it....we are now breathing.
Sunday 03.13.11 @ 7:00 PM
Thousand Oaks (Fred Kavli Theatre Thousand Oaks Civic Arts Plaza)
Smile With My Heart
Age of Innocence

And soon enough in a blink of an eye, we are already on our way to the next stop, Thousand oaks.  We passed through LA, nice for me as I grab my phone and call my friends living there.  I spent the night with them and it's a great break from life on the bus, on a place, in a strange hotel room.  We had a great dinner, full of laughter and catching up.  I will seem them at the show again the following night.  
Tuesday 03.15.11 @ 7:30 PM
Beaver Creek (Vilar Performing Arts Center)
Smile With My Heart
Age of Innocence

There's only one thought that comes to mind when you think Beaver creek...altitude, OMG.  We land in Colorado and it's warm.  A bus is waiting for us...a few more hours on the bus arggg.  But something got my attention quickly as I looked at the digits on the temperature showing above the driver.  It's going down and down and down into the 30s.  We were just in CA where the temperarture maintains itself and was perfectly warm.  As the sun sets, the most amazing painting in the sky appears.  I tried to take pictues with my phone, but it does not even come close to how amazing it truly is.  Oh well, it is an experience to be had rather than one to look at.  Everyone is looking outside the window.  The bus is quiet.
It is dark outside and the bus is slowing down.  It is now snowing, we have still 45 min of driving ahead of us and I suddenly feel weird.  I can feel myself breathing differently....great.  We finally arrive at the hotel.  The rooms are not ideal, but the hotel is still very charming, an interior with a huge fireplace dominating the entire room.  This I love.  There are some people lounging on sofas around the fire, now looking at us as we arrive en masse.  I left to get some food and get back to my room to get some rest, and all of a sudden it is already now 11pm.  I open my eyes to look at the clock.  It's 1 am and I cant sleep.  I keep taking unsatisfying big breath....its going to be an awful night.  2am, 3am, nothing.  I cant sleep so I turn on the tv to watch the early news.  Ana Cabrera 7 news Anchor/Reporter is on.  Thank you, Ana, you are making this unbearable night much better for me :)
I decide to have an early breakfast and meditate a little.  In my head I think, I am simply going to do it.  It is our last performance and for me it is not now that I am going to kneel.  The warm up at the studio is difficult because it is still very difficult to breath.  It is at the theatre that things become a little more complicated during rehearsal.  Each time I make an effort, I inhale and hold my breath for a second to get some power to lift.  But every time I do I get very dizzy and start to feel my head pounding.  Not the way you want to be when you are supposed to be the stable force, the anchor for the ballerina.  There were oxygen tanks there for us to take a deep breath for a minute to feel better.  The knot inside my chest goes away but comes back after 3 minutes.  Not good :(
Before I know it, I'm getting ready to perform.  I talk to Victoria and we decide to completely split the work.  She knows how I feel and decides to take over the first part of the duet and I will do the rest towards the end when the hard lifts come.  I go through the motions but do not muscle any one of my moves, not any more than I have to.  I keep taking deep and big breaths as I get close to my part of the work.  I feel Victoria giving more than ever to surpass the moment.  We are more connected than usual.  It's very amazing how with difficulty, two people come closer together to get through it.
It is my turn and I give everything.  I take one step at the time and I do not think any further than exact moment.  It was truly living in the moment.  What an experience.....
.......And then here we are back at Ohare by the baggage claim.  Temur is here to pick up Victoria (Temur hurt is back during Nutcarcker and was not able to come on tour with us).  I get my bag, turn around and catch her eye.  She is nodding at me with a glimmer of a smile in the corner of her face.  I mirror her, we understood each other.
This tour was an amazing experience.  It is in those special moments that you realize that you are alive because it is in difficult moments that you surpass everything you think you could do.  It makes each of your seconds here on this planet worth it!
Thank you mum and dad, thank you dancers, thank you Ashley, thank you Victoria.  Thank you Mr A......

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