Often I find the excitement of traveling in savoring the anticipation. I love to imagine what lies ahead - what the people are like, where are the busiest streets, how will I end up spending my time? In anticipating our tour I was also looking forward to performing for a wide range of audiences, and the chance to get a glimpse of cities throughout the UK. What I failed to imagine was the contrast of finding routine within the ever-changing kaleidoscope of scenery.
I felt myself falling into the rhythm of a unique lifestyle. Six days to become fairly acquainted with my surroundings, but only one day to get oriented. Landmarks serve as a frame of reference in a city, but soon I found myself using new types of landmarks as the placement of the quick change rooms and water coolers became reminders of which theatre served as home for the week. The size of each city’s stage, dictated the perimeters in which we could dance. Whether we were condensed and squeezed or given more room to breathe, the spacing changed with the scenery. Sometimes there was the additional factor of a raked stage which at first felt like vertigo. But just as upside down starts to seem like right side up after a few days, with a little practice the rake became the new normal.
In the little spaces of time spent in the outside world, curiosity lead me to explore the twists and turns of each city. The second stage of pleasure in traveling comes in absorbing the character of a city. Norwich intrigued me with it’s changing character. Night covers the entire city with a dark quiet blanket, but during the day, it bustles with artsy liveliness. In every city, I never had to search too far to find a gem.
After many weeks away, and the opportunity to see so much I found a new stability in a city that now genuninely felt like home. Leeds post-tour had a new ring of comfortability and familiarness I hadn’t experienced until now. Home is where the foundation of something can be nurtured. A few weeks to nurture the foundation of an exciting new ballet production, before its a whirlwind on the road again.