In our Winter Performance, one of our leads (who is also a teacher) had to perform part of her dance as though she were blind. This meant she had to keep her eyes closed. Wait for it… Let it sink it… Yup, there you go. This also meant no spotting. Whoa! However, she also says that it helped her learn more about the placement and technique of her body by being completely engulfed by it. That’s an interesting thought.
She said that she learned so much about herself as a dancer that she decided to have us give it a go at barre and do a couple of routines with our eyes closed. Nothing outlandish. Just some of your standard warm ups. Plies to fondues, etc. I don’t need to explain to you that it was difficult. Your center gets thrown off, and you have to set your mind deep inside yourself to pull any sort of function out. Still, you are much more aware of turnout, placement and the likes.
Now, for various reasons, I have been struggling in center. Turns have been a nightmare. Turning in and hopping, just messy. After doing some blind barre work, my turns were smoother. I glided instead of hopped. It was fantastic! My center of gravity was much more on que that it had ever been before. Of course, that peaked the confidence, and things steamrolled from there. Since we are a faith based studio, it was shared that doing a blind barre was much like our faith in Christ. The barre is there. We feel it. We depend on it. It is the foundation of building strength to do center work. When we close our eyes and cannot see the barre, things get thrown off so much. Yet, we have to trust it to do its part and be the guide, so we may gain strength in Him.