Wire Hangers or Ballet Shoes?

>> Tuesday, June 30, 2009

So, as I mentioned in my previous blog, I wasn't feeling inspired. I wasn't feeling very witty. I didn't feel the urge to write. That is, until I started to research dance schools for Nani.

My Marine and I talked about this and decided that Nani was old enough to start with some basic dance lessons. The girl loves to dance! My only thing was that if I was going to put her into dance classes, I wanted to put her into a dance school that was going to grow with her and teach her proper technique.....something I never had. Oh yeah, I took dance lessons all right, but once I got older and wanted to pursue dance even more, I was told that I had to be retaught basically everything I knew because my technique was so bad. So, I hung up the ballet slippers and put on the opanke. (For those of you not familiar - opanke is a type of dance shoe used in Eastern European folk dancing....but that my friends, is a story for another day.....)

Anyway, I wanted to start researching dance academies. Finding a good dance school is almost as competitive as putting your kid into the right preschool (grade school, high school, college, etc.) I did what any mom would do....I asked around and I got two pretty good recommendations. But tonight, just for the heck of it, I decided to do some more research on my own.

My first search came up with a well-known dance studio that I hadn't looked at before. They have three studios and have been around for close to 30 years. They have an extensive team of instructors and a strict dress code. Hmmmm.....I may have to check this one out.

But it was the next dance academy that had me really wondering......it was the "Mommie Dearest School of Dance and Charm". I seriously kid you not people....that was the actual name of the dance school. I was momentarily left speechless.

I just had visions of the dance academy's founder being an aging ballerina wandering around the dance studio wearing a white robe, cold cream on her face, hair pulled back with a 70s-style headband with a wild-eyed look on her face. She'd be holding a gin and tonic in one hand and a wire hanger in the other, smacking ballerinas on their ankles.

I can hear it now....

(My apologies to the writers and directors of the actual movie, Mommie Dearest, for changing the dialogue a bit)

"Joan" (Dance Instructor): [My Nani is practicing her plies while "Joan" urges her on] Well that's good, but you've got to push off more with your weight. Come on, let's see another one.

(Assistant Dance Instructor): She's had enough, "Joan"

Nani : But I'm tired

"Joan" (Dance Instructor): QUITTER?

The curiosity got the better of me and I read more of the academy's website. Turns out that the academy's founder did indeed at one time play Joan Crawford in some off, off, off, off broadway production. It seems that Joan Crawford was her inspiration for starting her own studio and naming it Mommie Dearest. (Out of all the dancers and actresses in the world, this one chooses Joan Crawford as her idol?) But wait -- it gets better! What follows is the actual bio of the academy's founder and leading lady. The name has been changed to protect the innocent....(snicker....)

"Joan" is the owner/operator of the Mommie Dearest School of Dance & Charm and has danced, taught, choreographed, and performed for over 30 years. As a performer, she has probably played every hooker/stripper part in Musical Theater. As a choreographer, she has choreographed a wide array of shows, from well-known musicals such as "The Music Man", "The Unsinkable Molly Brown", "Oliver", "A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum", "Guys & Dolls", and "Closer Than Ever", to more quirky performances such as The Mystery of Edwin Drood to the ever popular Vampire Lesbians of Sodom. She is proud to be presently choreographing and working with the Demented Divas at Lannie Clocktower Cabaret.

Are you kidding me??? Do I seriously want to entrust my precious, impressionable child to this school??? And did I mention that there was no mention of any "charm" classes whatsoever? I really think that's a good thing, don't you?

Now, before I get hate mail from Joan Crawford fans out there, I do recognize her as a wonderful actress in her day. Heck, she did win an Oscar - remember?

[Joan addresses the fans camped out in front of her house on Oscar night] I would rather be here with you than anywhere else in the world. You, all of you here and everywhere, gave me this award tonight. And I accept it from you and only you. I love all of you. Now please forgive me, good night.

I guess I'm back to square one..... (scratching the Mommie Dearest School of Dance & Charm off my list.....)


Dawn June 30, 2009 at 11:32 PM  

Omigosh this is awesome!!!!!!! Come on, let Nani go there. It would make for some great stories at preschool!

3 Bay B Chicks July 1, 2009 at 5:17 AM  

If this is the type of post that you write after being "uninspired", then WOW! You are hilarious! The throwback pictures and the description of your ideal dance school totally made me laugh.

Oh, and for the record, I agree with you completely. Charm classes are a must!


Erin @ Closing Time July 1, 2009 at 6:32 PM  

That is absolutely hilarious and horrifying all at the same time! Definitely one to cross off your list. But hey, you got a great blog post out of it!

This is my first visit to your blog...it looks great! :)

amanda July 2, 2009 at 7:04 AM  

i had the girls in dance for the first time this past year. it was a small studio run by a professional dancer. they really liked it. and so did i...the price was decent. although i must say it feel competitive between the moms. is there some unwritten rule about having to be all prissy?!!? because i don't do prissy. lol. hope you find a studio that works. :0)

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