Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Our First Goodbye

Number of Steps: 9262 (2.92 mi)

Today we had our final movement class… which, for me, is one of the saddest goodbyes for several reasons.  Vladimir is an amazing, warm, inspiring personality that, over the two separate months I have spent time with him, has pushed me to do things that I never believed I could have done.  Movement training here is so different from in the U.S., there is not really anywhere to go to continue the work I did with him – it’s all on me.  And as I sat there with my feet behind my head or my head on my knees or my feet in the air as I stood on one shoulder… I know that the only thing that really has the power to hold me back from anything is that little voice in my brain that tells me “I can’t.”  Vlad, on the other hand, tells us that the only thing we should really say is, “I can’t… yet.”  I can be pretty negative and defeatist in my daily life, and if I can carry that little bit o’ Vlad with me into the future, I’ll be in good shape. 

Group picture with the incomparable Vlad!
After photos and tearful goodbyes with Vlad (I totally expected myself to be all stoic, but I definitely got choked up), we had a quick lunch before heading to acting class, wherein we had a way too long discussion about the last two shows we had seen.  Then we did some training exercises in which we were a giant typewriter, and then another in which we had to send our energy to people with their back turned… a day that was really about focus, which was good.

Then we finished up our observation etudes and I presented our first Ivanov etude – from the point of view of one of the less popular characters: Zinaida.  No cute young lovers or tragic waifs for me, no sir.  Give me the curmudgeonly money lender!  It wasn’t as detailed as it should have been (they never are), but it went pretty well, so I feel like I redeemed myself from yesterday’s total bomb of an etude more or less.

Then the evening was free!  Nothing planned, no shows, no potlucks, no nothing!  So I began packing.  That’s right… this leaving thing is really going to happen.

As I was walking home today, I thought of something that happened yesterday that amused me, and I felt I should share it.  You see, most of our classes are taught through interpreters because most of our teachers don’t speak English.  Now, these translators are brilliant, but every now and again they come across words they’re not familiar with or are uncertain how to translate into English.  Yesterday, I taught our translator the word “Schmuck” and Vanessa taught her “nerd” and “slacker.”  She liked all three of those words very much, and used them proudly for the rest of class.  Another thought on translators: I need to work on my Russian – I would really love to be in on the conversations our teachers have with the translators when they know we can’t understand them.

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