The Dance Party

As this photo from 10+ years ago attests, I’ve always been a fan of the dance party

We hosted an impromptu dance party last weekend.

It didn’t start out as a dance party but that’s how the best dance parties come to be, I think.

It began with a neighbour from across the street coming over for a ‘quick’ drink before dinner. Not long after that, another neighbour popped by to return something and, naturally, we invited her in as well. She brought with her two of her children. On and on this went until we had three adults and four kids gathered around our kitchen.

Drinks lead to dinner, dinner led to more talking, and as time went on and people got louder, so too did the music.

One of the great things about kids is their lack of inhibitions; turn the music up and they think nothing of letting loose and dancing with abandon. It’s a beautiful thing not only because it’s fun to watch but it gives permission to everyone else to do the same.

And so, we did.

In 2010, Alice Walker wrote a book of poems entitled, “Hard Times Require Furious Dancing”. In the preface of the book, Ms. Walker describes how important dancing is to maintaining personal balance and I couldn’t agree more. Remarkably, miraculously, during the some of the worst times of my life, somehow dancing found a way in. And when it did, inevitably lifted spirits, a brighter outlook and a renewed sense of hope followed.

How lucky are those who have chosen dance as their vocation? Even when performing what seems to be a heartbreaking piece, the freedom of channeling their own pain and sorrows out through their movement must be so invigorating. Imagine the euphoria that must come with dancing a joyful performance!  The release of emotion by dancers is so visceral, even being in the audience, we can feel it too and benefit.

If you are going through tough times, I encourage you to put on a song that speaks to you and dance your pain out. Feeling good? Dance your joy. Either way, I guarantee you’ll feel better.

Turn up the music!

“… though we all have encountered our share of griefs and troubles, we can still hold the line of beauty, form and beat – no small accomplishment in a world as challenging as this one.”

Alice Walker

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