We have had an incredibly busy summer so far, and I feel like I am just coming up for air! Harper had her ballet recital two weeks ago. I was so nervous about how it would unfold. At the dress rehearsal, she told me she didn’t want me to volunteer, so I dropped her off and ran errands while she danced. Well apparently she cried for about 30 minutes after I left and was not happy that I “abandoned” her! Once she got on stage she was fine, but she was pretty upset backstage. I immediately volunteered to be a backstage mom for the actual recital, and I am so glad that I did.
Volunteering meant that I didn’t get to watch the whole recital, but I was able to sneak into the auditorium to watch Harper’s performance. For the rest of the recital (almost 3 hours!), myself and one other mom were in charge of 11 three and four year olds, which meant keeping them entertained and distracting them from missing their moms, keeping them fed but without food on their costumes, fixing their costumes and hair as needed, not LOSING any of them, and managing the frequent potty breaks. It was exhausting, to say the least, but I’m really glad I got to witness the backstage scene.
I was so impressed with how the older dancers took care of the little ones. They played with them, helped us out when we had too many to take to the potty, invited them to sit on their laps and watch the live feed of the show, and most importantly gave them a standing ovation when they came back into the room after their performance. It was so encouraging and so special for Harper and her classmates, and Harper has been talking non-stop about how when she is a “big girl ballerina,” she is going to help the little ones.
The performance itself brought me to tears! I distinctly remember having horrible stage fright as a kid. My mom said I loved ballet, but when recital time came around I was so nervous that I would practically throw up and run off the stage crying. Harper was exactly the opposite. She thrived on that stage! I watched many rehearsals leading up to the recital, and I have to say that she did not once do the dance correctly. I was so nervous that she would mess up on stage and cause the whole thing to unravel, which did happen once in rehearsals! However, when the lights came on and the music started, she was one of the few kids who did it absolutely perfectly, and had an enormous smile on the entire time. She was so happy out there, and is already talking about her “next” performance!
I was so proud of how she performed in such a professionally produced show. It was a big auditorium with a very large audience. It started with an exhibition dance by the Dance Company, then the director gave an introduction to the show, then the lights went down and the room was pitch black. When the lights came back on, the spotlight was on 11 toddlers in the middle of the stage, standing hands on hips and smiling at us. The whole auditorium erupted in a big “awww!” then started clapping along with the music. It was such a joy to watch!
After the show, Daddy and Nona gave Harper flowers and a balloon, and she walked out of there as proud as a peacock, like she owned the place. Needless to say, I am very excited that she has found an activity that she really loves, and she is so excited to keep dancing!
My one big mistake: I forgot my camera! I did buy a DVD of the performance and hopefully will be able to put her dance up on the blog when it arrives. I have one photo of Harper and Nona after the recital. We got home at 10:30pm, and Harper was still wired!