Calm before the Storm
By Vicki Parsons, Managing Director of Schools

Have you ever been outside when suddenly everything goes quiet? The air seems still, there is an eerie calm, and even the birds stop singing? Then you feel a change in the air. You know what’s coming; a storm…and this is just the calm before it hits full force. It's an intriguing occurrence. It's quiet at Ballet Austin today. Too quiet, some would say…others would not. They know what's coming.

While the studios may seem somewhat empty today, and the quiet almost deafening, it’s only a matter of days now before about 270 students from all over the United States and other countries descend on Ballet Austin for the Summer Intensive. I can feel it. There’s a change in the air. The first signs of what is to come. Ballet Austin Chaperones have moved into the St. Edward’s dormitory. Hundred’s of Capital metro bus passes and thousands of extra rolls of toilet paper have been purchased. The list goes on. Airport runs are coordinated to pick up students and their hundreds and hundreds of suitcases. Returning students hug after a year apart. New students anticipate what is to come. Activities have been planned for the dorms: playing games, decorating doors and t-shirts, watching movies, playing twister, karaoke night, Project Runway, the Congress Avenue bats, and more. Over 4,000 boxed lunches will be loaded into refrigerators. More than 1300 round trips will be made between Ballet Austin and the St. Edward’s dorm. Bodies everywhere…stretching, sleeping, anticipating, watching, listening, talking, texting, laughing. And then there is why they come…to dance.

Studio schedules have been checked, instructors are thinking through choreography. About 900 classes will be taught over the 6 weeks including ballet technique, pointe, partnering, jazz, musical theatre, choreography, Pilates, modern, variations and conditioning. Six student performances will take place in the AustinVentures StudioTheater. Parents come from all over to pick up their students, visiting classes while here, and watching the final performances before heading back home. These quiet studios will amp up. Some welcome the flood of energy and enthusiasm these summer students bring; others are braced for an onslaught. Storms are forecasted…but for now it’s calm…

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