98% of gigs are great! However sometimes challenging circumstances can happen which often prove to be vital experiences which you can add to your “lessons learnt” list.
So we had a gig booked at an outdoor event on a boiling hot day. Jivan’s Nanna’s was away so I organise last minute care for a morning session at his play care, I ask my mum to come over so I can pick up my other son Kuan from school so Jivan can have his day sleep. I then asked my best mate Tash to care for my boys while I get ready. My son had a major freak out the night before due to tiredness and feeling overwhelmed, so I was still emotionally recovering from this!
I prepared dinner, got into costume, and was off to the event. We arrived at the location where we were booked to perform on an outdoor stage. The stage was covered over head but was situated where the sun directly shines right on our back! I have a wet flannel draped over my neck to try to cool me off but it dries in like 15 minutes! We are due to start in 5 minutes to an audience who is obviously hot and are squinting to see us as the sun is directly behind us. The wind picks up so we realise our veil choreography is a no go, we decide to come up with a basic veil choreography on the spot, and both agree to improvise to the song using the Body Temple Steps. Our main rule was: Do not lower the veil below the waist.
We quickly listed some of the steps we could incorporate with the veil and off we went ( I also asked Stuart, the musician to introduce us and announce to the audience that due to the intense wind we have had to change the choreo and have made one up on the spot just for them!)
And…. It amazingly worked!! We adjusted many of the Rythmic steps from the BT format and improvised for the entire song!
Sonia did an amazing job staying centred internally and balanced physically as she performed her second ever sword solo under extreme conditions. Sweat was pouring and the sun was hot!
The surface was paved so we wrapped the balls of our feet with plaster tape which worked wonderfully however I didn’t realise some of the sticky part was exposed and throughout our set my feet kept getting stuck to my skirt! Well I decided to rip it off straight afterwards so it would happen in the second set, which we decided to do on the grass and this time the sun baked the sides of us instead on our backs!
Here are some lessons learnt (I often have several to add after each gig)
1) in hot weather know exactly where you will be dancing and where the sun will be at the time you are on. Ask the organiser (in this case she was an awesome lady and very open) if there is another space that is available in extreme weather Conditions
2) bring extra water so you can re wet your flannel to cool the back of your neck off
3) find out what the surface is that you are dancing on and if it will be shaded- sticking plaster won’t cut it in some circumstances. If you need to wear shoes they will obviously need to suit your costume
4) in extreme wind have a stand by veil choreography that doesn’t involve it sticking to your face or a different entrance piece ready to go. Research wind conditions in the weather forecast
5) if you use tape on your feet make sure no sticky part is exposed!
6) and…don’t give yourself a hard time of you don’t feel you danced your best!
I am sharing this post with you cos it was one of those very odd gigs that felt like it was challenge after challenge, and yet we overcame it and did our best. These experiences are such an awesome way to feel gratitude for the other easy 98% gigs.
After just finishing the last post on Do you feel the MAGIC when you dance? Due to the circumstances it was a little hard to feel the magic this time LOL