What’s The Buzz ?
Corner of E 66th Street and 1st Avenue, April 6, 2012
Step away from the corner of E 66th Street and 1st Avenue, and you will find a coffee shop called Java Girl http://www.javagirlinc.com/ where customers are on first name terms with the owner. This is where I sit, outside, by a cherry blossom tree, with a cup of coffee to gather enough courage to survive a nine o’clock class at the Martha Graham http://marthagraham.org/school/ School. I remember Denise Jefferson http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/20/arts/dance/20jefferson.html?_r=1, who introduced me to the Graham technique when I moved to New York in 2009, and for whom I would rise early and happily for her 8:30 am classes on monday mornings at the Alvin Ailey school. I did not realise the world of good that her classes did to heal a former hip fracture, whose memory continues to haunt muscles which often anticipate pain where there is next to none. The coffee accompanies me to my first Graham class in years; so does meeting Paula from Düsseldorf, Germany and whose smile, when asked why she dances, disarms my trepidation. Once we start the first set of exercises, I start to wonder whether this is a good idea. After half an hour, I no longer doubt, I know that I have committed a terrible mistake. An hour into the class, I vow never to return, perhaps to abandon dance altogether, and the will to live is debatable. Why am I here? Why am I doing this? Why can’t I just…and then it happens. My back is spiraling around my pelvis as I turn into an arabesque to sink my head down, before running to freeze, stage right in a contraction, and there it is; the back of my right leg, which I haven’t felt in years. I turn to smile at Paula whilst I continue to dedicate the class to Denise Jefferson as I suddenly understand a correction she once gave me. Here we are; it is as I am, suddenly, making sense.
Read more from Miriam Aziz – The Artist is at Large http://miriamaziz.wordpress.com/