Ariadne the Ballerina

I am a frustrated ballerina. Up to this point, I still wonder what if I took formal ballet as a child. I will never forget my ballet presentation in school, where we had a show in Folk Arts Theater, no less.

My daughter, meanwhile, loved ballet, that it took us three years to ensure she likes it.

Aria finally finished her first ballet classes under Ballet Manila.

Since we only live in the next street, we decided to enrol in this school run by Prima Ballerina Lisa Macuja-Elizalde and Osias Barroso.

Three years ago when she first learned about ballet, through a cartoon called Angelina Ballerina, and eventually through a book about ballet which I bought online.

She had watched a lot of ballet performances, from three ballet companies in the area (I love Pasay City because it’s an arts hub, despite the crowded and traffic streets!). The very first full length we watched was in 2014 which is Ballet Philippines’ Cinderella. Then we watched Mga Kwento ni Lola Basyang, which was her fifth birthday outreach activity, sponsoring kids from Food for Hungry Minds to watch this ballet. Before Christmas last year, she watched Philippine Ballet Theater’s The Nutcracker with her dad, and Ballet Philippines’ Peter Pan.

Aria treated all these kids (plus some of their teachers and parents) to a night of ballet and Philippne literature. A memorable fifth birthday for her.

And so, this summer, we asked her again if she is really decided to take ballet. Since this will take up most of her time, we really had to ask her not once but a lot of times.

Good thing, Ballet Manila had an Open House activity in March where Aria got to try a full hour of lesson.

The lonesome student with the teacher. Teacher Maika was also her actual teacher in her class.

What we liked about Ballet Manila was, aside from its proximity, the waiting area for parents and guardians has CCTV so you could see your child while in class. I just hope they would be more strict in terms of security, especially when their gates are wide open and outside the parking area is the busy one way street already.

Finally, she started lessons in April. We didn’t have ballet clothes yet, but we got sponsors.

Aria got this leotard from one of my voice students.

My mom and sister (thank God for them!) bought almost all of her clothes–from leotards to tights to shoes.

First day high. And lookmat her purple shoes! Nope, the recommended attire is pink, but she eventually got pink ones soon after. Purple rocks!

Aria had ballet lessons three times a week, but since Mommy and Daddy had to work, too, it was mostly my mom–her Nonna–who takes her to class. Good thing we’re literally a skip and a hop away! One pedicab, actually, since it was scorching hot during her timeslot of 11 in the morning.

She eventually had rehearsals, which filled up her afternoons. She skipped a couple of sessions due to other pre-scheduled events (which were actually because of this blog). She even squeezed in two weeks of swimming lessons in a nearby hotel (that’a story for another day).

Thereafter, they had a photoshoot session for the souvenir program.

She got so dark because of swimming.
This was her class, Twinkle Toes level. 5-6 year olds.

She was so excited for the recital, that ever since learning her steps, she kept on practicing at home with her doll as partner (talk about artist discipline!). She also kept on reminding me and her dad about recital day, and made sure she invited the people dear to her to watch.

Recital day came, and we were in full force to support our little ballerina! They danced two musical numbers, and sharing with you one of them here. Click this link.

We are so proud of our little ballerina!

So, do we continue? Yes, we will, but probably delay it for a couple months since we are starting Grade 1 already and we will homeschool (yes, another post!).

It was one fulfilling summer for her. And for us parents, too.

Daddy wrote this dedication for the souvenir program.
Prima Ballerina and my little ballerina. #fangoals (for me, that is!).

How did you spend your summer?

~ Touringkitty

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