I’ve told you before about my hair and makeup prep for Showcase. But a friend of mine asked about what tips and tricks I have for the day. So, AD, this one’s for you!
I actually have a list of stuff to bring for the day. (And yes, by list, I mean a Word document I save on my computer. Nerd alert.) First, my dresses. Oh my dresses. I love my dresses!! Anyway, before I had dance dresses, I used to list my smooth skirt, my rhythm skirt, my top to go with both. Oh, and don’t forget the shoes! Both rhythm and smooth shoes. I keep my old pairs – there’s a whole rotation scheme for each – so I always bring one old pair just in case something happens to my performance shoes. I also bring an extra pair of nylons.
(OK, the scheme is this: I buy a new pair of shoes. That pair becomes the performance pair. The pair that was the performance pair becomes the shoes I wear every day at the studio for lessons and groups and parties. The pair that was the pair I wear every day become the old pair that I use to practice at the gym and for studio dance outings. The pair that was the old pair gets tossed. See? Simple.)
I bring the clothes I’ll need for dinner, since we have a dinner/dance afterwards. So I’ll bring a dress and a change of nylons. Usually because I’m done with fishnets at that point. Worse case scenario is I just change into a different pair of fishnets.
I used to bring my flat iron, ponytail holders, bobby pins, a brush and a comb. But I’ve gotten lazy and comfortable, so I just leave my hair up for the evening portion. Too much work to try and change it for dinner. Oh I also bring jewelry for dinner as well as a purse. To carry my ID and cash for the bar. Best tasting cocktail is the one I get after dancing all day.
I bring my makeup so I can do touch ups throughout the day if needed. And also to prepare for the dinner. I bring deodorant and perfume – for the same reason.
I bring whatever medication I might need – ibuprofen, Tylenol, Pepcid, etc. I bring breath mints. ‘Cause, ya know. Ew.
I bring food. The studio does have the hotel provide morning treats and afternoon treats. But the morning treats are pastries and fruit, and the afternoon treats are cheese and crackers. All really great, but there’s rarely enough, and there’s not a lot of protein there. So I try to bring food to eat throughout the day. Especially protein. I bring my water bottle. Again, the hotel provides a ton of water; it’s just habit for me to bring mine.
I bring my camera to take pictures throughout the day and videotape some stuff.
Almost most importantly, I bring my IPod. I’m an introvert, so I worry that being around people all day like that will be draining. So I’m always prepared to sneak off for a few minutes and decompress with my IPod. I haven’t had to do it yet, but I want to be prepared for it. Of course, the tough thing for me is that you’re part of the studio community, so you should show up for others because they show up for you. That’s being part of a community. So I would probably feel guilty if I snuck off, which is probably why I haven’t done it yet.
I bring a highlighter (although I forgot mine this time!) so that I can highlight my name in the program. That makes it easy to find, so I can quickly tell when my next heat is. I bring a small bag to hold the stuff I want to keep in the ballroom with me – phone, lipstick, face powder, snacks, mints.
I pack (or at least lay out) everything the night before. I don’t want to make the morning too crazy, and I want to spend the morning focusing on my hair and makeup. I review my list a few times before I leave though. Gotta ease the OCD tendencies.
I try to get there right around the time warm-ups start. That gives me time to change and warm-up a little. I rarely have anything except maybe a 45-second spotlight in the first hour, so warming up isn’t super important at that time. But I do like to do a few warm-up dances just to loosen up. I try to actually do a few warm-up waltz boxes by myself a few heats before my heats. And when it’s rhythm, I do a few moves to loosen up the hip muscles before my heats.
I also support my fellow students and help them with whatever they might need too. I also try hard to stay positive and just enjoy the day. I’m lucky that I don’t get nervous that day. To me, it’s just the one day (or 2 days technically) each year that I know I’m a great dancer, and I dance better than I ever have, even on lessons. I’m so thankful for that.
So that in a nutshell – or a wordy post – is my plan for Showcase.