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School of Dance

Dutch

1. Why NYSSSA? (why audition, why did you decide to attend?)
I attended the School of Dance in 2012 and 2013.

2. How did you find out about NYSSSA?
I chose to audition for NYSSSA because I wanted to try something new - I wanted to go away and explore dance! When I got my acceptance, I was beyond excited - and beyond scared! I had never been away from home before, I didn't know anyone going, and I had only ever done one Modern technique - Graham. I knew, however, that I would be exposed to so much and that it would be an incredible experience. I was watching a couple dance videos on You Tube and there was a video from the School of Dance 2011 - so I looked up the SOD and found the Facebook page.

3. Typical Day/Schedule at NYSSSA?
7:15 - I get up and head over to the Dining Hall for breakfast - there's always tons of food and lots of selection!
8:00 - After breakfast I'll head to the bus for a short ride to the National Museum of Dance.
9:00 - Our morning starts with a technique class (the teacher changes every week) and we get moving and into our "groove." I like technique a lot because it gets us set up for the day and it's always fun.
10:30 - Once technique is over it's time for repertory - we'll break off and work in our smaller groups Repertory (“rep”) is one of my favorite parts of the day - I love learning new choreography and the choreographers at NYSSSA always have the coolest choreography.
12:00 - Once rep is over, hop back on the bus to Skidmore for lunch - which is always lots of fun - we're constantly making jokes and laughing about everything.
1:30 - We're back at the Studios and we do a quick 30-minute run through and review of our big group piece - this past summer was my favorite piece ever, Battlefield.
2:00 - Now some of us will head to more rep or Body Conditioning - I head to Body Conditioning - one of my favorite classes. Here we'll work with Marisa on strengthening, nutrition, injury prevention, anatomy, and well being. I like the class so much that it's inspired me to take Sports Medicine this year at school!
3:30 - We end the "dance" day with my favorite class - Composition - probably one of the coolest classes we take. Today we're working on Forsythe technique and exploring how far we can push our bodies - as usual I leave the class feeling completely energized and loving what I get to do.
5:00 - We head back to Skidmore and grab dinner in the Dining Hall - my favorite meal of the day. Rehearsal can be tough sometimes - and we're always there for each other at the end of the day.
7:00 - After dinner, depending on the evening, we might go bowling or head into town. My favorite thing to do, however, is to just hang out in the Dorms. Everyone's door is always open and we're always having fun - dancing around, laughing, and just talking. Some of my favorite moments at NYSSSA have just been hanging out in someone's room talking!
11:00 - After another crazy day I'll head to bed to get ready for another incredible day at NYSSSA.

4. Best Moment at NYSSSA?
My "best" moment at NYSSSA would undoubtedly have to be performing Battlefield by Robert Battle and set by Erika Pujic. I'll never forget the pounding music and the energy on that stage - Erika had told us if we pushed hard enough we would reach a "Magical Place" and that night we certainly did! It was probably one of the most incredible moments of my life to get to be on a stage with 29 other people, pounding out steps, barely able to breathe, surging toward this one place of complete focus where nothing mattered but what we were doing in the moment. I can barely describe it - it was just plain amazing! I would go back and do it a hundred million times if I could!

5. Why would you encourage someone to audition for NYSSSA?
I would encourage anyone who loves dance to audition for NYSSSA - the audition in of itself is an incredible experience! There is no place like NYSSSA - the people you will meet and the experiences you will have will change your life - literally! There is not a day that goes by that I don't think about one of my friends from NYSSSA or some joke we had or a piece we learned. There are no words to completely describe NYSSSA - you just have to experience it for yourself!