Do You Dance?

also known as “So, you dance, right?”.

That’s basically the reaction after you tell people from a non-theatre researcher-backround that you are enrolled in a dances studies MA programme. I mean, I know how to conquer these sort of weird questions because for the past three years I had been studying something that made people ask “So you wanna be an actress!” (nope, I don’t. If I wanted to be one I’d applied to performing arts schools.).

Right after I had been on stage with the performance I wrote about in my post “Theatrical Birth // Theatergeburtstag” I decided that I am not a performer at all and that there are things I am definitely better at than performing. That was around the time when I decided I wanted to be a dramaturg. And nothing has changed in this department. So, now I am enrolled in a dance studies programme and people ask me “Do you dance?” or tell me “Right, you had been dancing for so long as a kid!” all the time.
But people: I’m not there to dance.
Of course, I have been attending dance classes for a little more than 12 years of my 23 year long life – and I have enjoyed it all the way – but this has absolutely nothing to do with me being intersted in dance studies today. There are people beginning to study theatre studies and they tell people “I liked drama in school!” or “I’ve taken drama for the last three years of school.” or “At home I was in this drama club and now I’m here!” and to be honest, it’s great that they enjoyed being on stage so much, but I never have understood them properly. I am not saying that this is the wrong way to approach your studies. What I am saying that this’d be the wrong approach to me. If I enjoy doing things so much I enjoy doing them and not watching other people doing them, right?
For example: Last week I was sick and I could not run or go to the gym. One day my sister send me a pic of her running shoes on her feet with her running tights on and the caption “Morning Run!” and I was like: Noooooooo! You don’t do this to a runner who can’t run!
Do you get my point?

At some point I’ve realized that I enjoyed watching people do stuff on stages much more than I enjoyed being one of those people on stage doing stuff. I am not a “Hey, look at me!”-kind of person. And most important I am NOT an actress or a dancer.
What doesn’t mean that I am not aware of my body in a presence-kind of way. All of you following me on twitter (if you don’t, you should @Lisanne_Wi) get a sense of my running-gym-adventures and I am a rather picky eater because I know what my body likes in order to work well (in a very basic sense of: functioning and me being able to be happy). I know how my body does and reacts (to) certain stuff and I know how certain movements (might) impact my/your/a body. But that of course doesn’t mean that I have to do this all the time. In a way I hate moving/doing dance stuff around people I’ve originally met to work with as a researcher.

The other day some people I know from my BA studies had a performance (sadly I couldn’t see it) in a performing arts festival and right when they told me about it, I was like: Damn, why am I not with them? (because I still think I’m a good thinker and I can do theatre.) But then I remembered that I don’t perform.

So basically the conclusion of this post could be: NO! Theatre scholars are not actors and dance scholars are not dancers. They might not even like to dance or act. And they might not even like/love theatre in the first place.

Are you studying something that makes people think you do stuff different from what you REALLY do?
I’d be delighted to hear about it. 🙂


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