Nia's Role as Dance Captain (My Episode 22 Recap)
Nia’s presence at the top of the pyramid was a delightful surprise. Although it would have been terrific fo her to be selected to do a solo or have a featured role after earning a spot at the top of the pyramid, I was happy that Nia was selected as the dance captain this week. The role of dance captain is not usually offered to anyone on the team so earning this position was really special. I was very happy that the rest of the team was so happy for Nia when she earned a place at the top of the pyramid. It was great to see everyone surrounding Nia and hugging her as they congratulated her on this achievement. Although I am not a fan of the pyramid, the pyramid does mean something to Nia.
Watching her photo move up and down the pyramid each week is intense. The pyramid is a public display of Abby’s evaluation of your performance. Despite how difficult it may be, Nia has managed to use the pyramid experience as a catalyst for improvement. Nia is a goal directed person with many talents. She is a dancer, a performer, and a leader. I think Abby is beginning to see all of this as well and that is why she made Nia dance captain.
Nia viewed the role of dance captain as a great honor. She took her role as dance captain very seriously. I think Nia demonstrates outstanding leadership skills as evidenced by her work this past week. She took notes on the choreography and gave everyone copies of the choreography typed out. She rehearsed the routine with the girls whenever there was a free moment in the dance studio as well as in the competition dressing room. I was impressed with her initiative and commitment to the job. Nia has a mentor who is a dance captain on Broadway and the thought of sharing a similar role was exhilarating for Nia. It seemed like Nia’s hard work this year was beginning to pay off.
Although Nia did an exceptional job when she was asked by Abby to call Maddie in for practice, I must admit I was concerned. I did not think it was appropriate for Nia to call Maddie and I worried about the pressure it put on two young girls who have no control over the circumstances or situation. This time the result turned out well but I would not want this to be a regular expectation of a dance captain role.
The theme of the dance, “Taken”, was very mature. Abby has a tendency to take current event topics and turn them into a dance. This time I believe that Abby was trying to make a statement through her dance that the culture at a dance studio or peer pressure can be a negative influence. I think the dance was striking. I have come to accept that Nia will have to play certain characters in a dance piece and that is the way I have chosen to look at this experience. When discussing the dance with Nia so she understood the artistic interpretation of the piece, I used hypothetical situations to describe Abby’s message.
I do not think the girls fully understood what Abby was suggesting with her choreography. Abby may editorialize through dance. She is the choreographer. Nia’s focus is on the dance content, technique and having a sufficient understanding of the dance’s theme in order to convincingly portray the characters and deliver a high quality performance.
There was incredible tension and mama drama this week at the dance studio. Maddie usually does a solo so I expected that Maddie would be given a solo this week. Abby did not assign Maddie a solo at pyramid. Later, when Abby requested it, Melissa’s decision to have Maddie not do a solo was puzzling. Melissa’s decision to not have Maddie do a solo did not concern me. I did not discuss the topic at all with Melissa. It was wrong for Melissa to suggest or imply that somehow the other moms were responsible for her decision to not have Maddie do a solo. Melissa did not want to take personal responsibility for a personal decision that she made. Abby had not initially given Maddie a solo. Melissa did not like Maddie being asked to do a solo on the eve of the competition. It was Melissa’s parental choice to make and she alone made it.
Melissa should have owned that she alone made the decision and not unfairly point fingers at other people. Melissa was trying to blame the other moms for her decision because she knew that Abby was annoyed with her because Maddie did not do the solo. She was deflecting the blame away from herself and trying to put the blame on others. Smart? I was left wondering this week what was the real reason that Melissa did not want Maddie to do the solo. Was Melissa being a concerned mom or reminding Abby that Maddie was not going to do last minute solos? Who knows?
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