Dancing in a Parade Pt. 1: The Heat

18Jun10

For those of you who don’t know, dancing in a parade is a lot different than dancing on a stage.

I know a lot of you are thinking, “Duh! Of course it is!” but as a young adult dancer with the freshness of beginning my actual dance career, I thought, “It can’t be that difficult to get used to.”

Oh lord was I wrong.

I dance in the South. Do you know how hot it gets here in the South? It’s ridiculously hot down here. 95+ degrees is NORMAL. We also wear long sleeved, long legged unitards. Now, I’ve never been a fan of the unitard. It’s like someone decided one day to punish dancers by making them wear one piece of lycra so that even the skinniest girls will look frumpy. It’s just not flattering. It’s not as if I, as a dancer, already needed more fuel to the fire that is my shattered body image.

However, none of this would be an issue if we had air conditioning. That’s one thing that I miss every time I’m out on the route. We pass by retail shops with their doors open and it takes every ounce of will power NOT to stop and do choreography in place just so I can catch a breeze (don’t tell my supervisor).

We’ve had people quit or severely cut their hours just because they can’t handle the heat literally. So, dancers, when you get super excited that you just landed a role in the parade, better start learning to love exercising out in nature because you’re right, it’s not that difficult except in the South where it is RIDICULOUSLY HOT.

Next entry, we’ll discuss heckling from the crowd.

Disclaimer: I feel absolutely blessed to be doing what I love as a profession: dancing. That love is the only thing keeping me from throwing down the gauntlet and saying, “Okay, heat! YOU WIN!” So take everything I just said as me blowing off steam. HA! Get it?

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