Seven pairs of eyes were glued to the 7″ screen. Music blared through the speakers plugged to the laptop. Onscreen professional dancers did moves we mere mortals cannot comprehend. But off screen, six teenagers and one Pasali staff sat on the floor of the great hall of the second floor of Pasali’s Childrens Desk building. I swear – and I never swear – one kid’s eyeballs almost popped out.

This week I was asked by Pasali Children’s Desk Staff Dudez to help the theater group choreograph an interpretive dance. They were ages 15 to 18 and they had never done this kind of dance before. He knew I my love for dance and sharing. And he knew, this was an offer I could not resist.

For three mornings we had intense sessions – split between teaching them how to choreograph and working with them to choreograph The Prayer. I expected to surprise them with new material, but in the end, they surprised me. They were not beginners. And they were certainly not shy of complicated choreography. When the boys lifted a comrad high on their shoulders in the beginning of the song, it was my turn to sit tong-tied. My simple contribution in their choreography is the moments they sit, stand, and sit or stand still.

It was trainer’s heaven. They were disciplined. Followed intructions well. The things I explained they absorbed with such audacity. When their choreography mirrored the vigor of the examples I shared, I can only conclude the teaching did something. But to what end? Simply developing their creative talents is not enough. In the Philippines the arts as profession is only taken seriously by a small rich elite, far away in Manila. Television showcases amateur talent. Dance as art, high art is not a concept here. If only we could come up with a vision for the arts that exceeds existing lines. But where would we start?

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In a 1-on-1 coaching moment, dancer Mik says,

I didn’t expect we’d be able to express what is inside as we did. And I didn’t expect that so much unity would grow between us. And this week we did contemporary dance, which is the dance I dreamt of learning since highschool.

(Ed: contemporary/lyrical jazz is the style we worked with)


8 thoughts on “Dance Choreography Workshop

  1. shene….how are you ?i hope you are gin good conditions while reading m,y letter ,i just want you to thank,FOR YOUR SHARING WITH US YOUR TALENT TIME AND YOUR TREASURE …i hope that someday we meet again cause you know you really inspired us on how to dance excellently thank you ….more power to you shene …..GOD BLESS YOU ALWAYS MISSING YOU ATOR,RICHARD M.

    • hi chard,,,mzta nah?
      just want to thank you din for being a good friend for me…and thanks for the laugh and smile that you’ve been shared me…i loveand god bless you..

    • ellow hen,,, guxto ko lng mag thankyou sayo for being my big brother… hope na di ka mag bgo,,word is not enough to say how lucky we are to have you in the group….don’t lose hope hen,,continue all of your dreams..hope your success in life,,t’c always and i love you so much,,, “]]]mwuah..xD,,

      “magan ilabang”

  2. ellow shane,,are you?i just want to thank you for time and knowledge that you’ve shared us,,and also for the roof of patients..i wish to see you again..and we mizz you so much…take care always and we love you so much sister shane,,,mwuah..

  3. ellow guyz,,i miz you so much,,,jejeje hope na wlang magbgo stin,,,stay of what we are lng guyz…

    kuya doods,,,ahmpx tnx for being our big2x brother in the group…for all of the advices na di mo pinag’kait smin,,and also for the laugh that you’ve shared us,,,and specially sa mahaba mong pasensya,,,tnx tlga,,,
    we love you so much,,mwuah “]]]
    t’c lge ah..

  4. hi guyssss
    musta na kayo hope mag kitakita napod ta ninyo ulit,,miss you all
    kuya dudsssssss…….sowe la ko ka gahin sa ug time para sa gi offer nimo na raket ,,,busy pam gyods ko oiiiiiug raket man pod ni
    musta na ate shene?

    miss you


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