Sunshine and Longer days!

I spoke to my big sis yesterday during our weekly Sunday Face Time chats and she exhausted the conversation early to get out and enjoy the rays of sunshine.  She lives in Alaska and was gloating over the longer days becoming more noticed.

This coming weekend we spring forward and  although we lose an hour of sleep – who cares, right?! An extra hour of sunlight moving closer to solstice day creates hope for the cold days to end (although here in KC we have had a seriously mild winter)!

What does longer days of sun mean for you? Here are my favs!

  • Flowers, flowers and more flowers!
  • Walks and hikes for a much greater span!
  • Corn hole and beer – just saying!
  • Vitamin D – healthy immune system!
  • Fresh fruits and Veggies!
  • Green Grass and Parks!
  • Water Slides, Water Parks, Water Rides, Water Fountains, Water Polo!

Now looking at the bottom right corner of my computer I see that it’s just March 6…Yikes, I may be a little overconfident here, although back to my point…Spring forward is this weekend so mark your calendars and sunlight feel free to shine on through!






It’s everywhere.  Anytime.  Infinite.

A step. A swipe. A push. A nod. A smile. A grab. A tap. A shake. A word. A reaction. An action. A calmness. A flow. A tear. A chop. A scoop. A current. A complacent answer. A grind. A order. A fast hand typing. A carry. A creation. A lookout. A pickup. A gesture. A taste. A heartbeat. A breath.

I observed these particular movements on my coffee break from Septime Weber’s rehearsal day of Alice at KCB.  Then I sat back & thought. . . Why is movement so interesting?

What makes a dancer’s movement contagious, or subjectively liked more than another? Just like at the coffee shop, movement which has purpose – a clear determination – flows & has a sense of appeal.

If you dance & are reading this or do anything that includes movement – everything – I want you to think about why you do what you do.  Believe in it and move with a sense of confidence.  If you are wrong you will soon learn.  Pick it back up, fix the problem, and keep on moving forward.  One movement at a time.

Here are some images of movement.  Beautiful movement from one position to another from our festival show, Kansas City Dance Festival (KCDF).

I hope you all have a great rest of the week!

photo 1KCDF dancer (2014) Gabriel Davidsson.  Photo credit: Paul Garcellano.

photo 3 copyDancers: Molly Wagner, Kaleena Burks, & Tempe Ostergren. Photo Credit: Paul Garcellano

photo 2Dancer: Gabriel Davidsson.  Photo credit: Paul Garcellano


Integration Through Collaboration

First and foremost, I would like to take a moment to remember loved ones lost, their families, and the heroes on this day, 10 years ago.  

Integrating dance & health cannot be done without the use of collaboration.  Twyla Tharp quotes, ” A clearly stated and consciously shared purpose is the foundation of great collaborations.”  The ideas, opinions, and words from people on both sides of the integration is key to the purpose of dancehealthier.

I asked, “With dance in mind, what is your personal definition of health – Not Wiki’s version?”  

Brooke Wade Murphy – Currently studying at NYU, world traveler, and past dancer with Cincinnati Ballet.

  • To be a healthy dancer, it is important to have a sense of balance. Physically, one must balance stretching and strengthening, maintenance and development, work and rest. Additionally, one’s mental/emotional health is also an important element in the balanced life of a healthy dancer. I personally feel that artists, more than any other professionals, often measure their personal value and worth by the quality, success, and public acceptance of their art. For artists, passion is usually more central to the trade than monetary success. Therefore, if you are dissatisfied with yourself as a dancer, it can be a slippery slope into becoming dissatisfied with your personal self because the level of investment in your work is so great. Disappointments hit straight to the heart, not just to the resume or wallet. It is for this reason that I believe finding a sense of balance between dance as your work, dance as your passion, and dance as your identity. To be a truly healthy dancer, you must have a little of all three, but also a sense of self and significance outside of dance.
Jimmy Cunningham – Graduate of College – Conservatory of Music at the University of Cincinnati with a BFA in dance and currently a dancer with Cincinnati Ballet.                            
  • You have to put gas in the car…eat healthful foods. Take care of your instrument, warm up your body and treat it well. And don’t let the mental drama drag you down; stay positive.
Haley Maier – Dancer with Rochester City Ballet.
  • I know, personally, I feel most healthy when I eat a consistently well-balanced diet. It just makes my body and mind feel better to know that I am putting in healthy and sustainable nutrients in it rather than stuffing it full of empty calories. Right now, my favorite breakfast is my morning smoothie. I can pack all the protein and vitamins in it that I need and it keeps me feeling satisfied for a longer period of time. I also feel the most healthy after I work out, whether it be in the gym or at the studio. Working out my body always makes me feel better about myself and gives my mind time a chance to relax. I love the satisfaction that a good work out gives me.  Lastly, I feel most healthy when I am well-rested. I don’t ever underestimate a good nights rest or a nap here and there. I think it is very important and beneficial to always make sure I am getting the right amount of sleep each night. My body has to rejuvenate. I love my sleep:)
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More to be continued. . .