Monday, February 5, 2007

Day 22: To Infinity and Beyond

The Infinity Ballet Conservatory and Dance Theater is located in Apex, North Carolina near Raleigh. Apex was in the news last October when an industrial plant caught fire blanketing parts of the city in a yellow-green haze. Fortunately, there was no evidence of such a thing on the beautiful spring-like day we visited.

The word "Apex" means the highest point, and the town got its name because it was the apex of a Raleigh rail line. Located in North Carolina's research triangle area, it is a region of PhDs and high culture.

Valery taught two classes here. What was most notable was how well trained the younger dancers were. The philosophy at Infinity is to take it slow and to be sure the young students have the foundations before moving on to more compicated combinations. Kids can be understandably impatient to do pirouettes and jetes, and sometimes studios give into this desire and spend less time than they should on the basics like standing and walking like a dancer.

Often on our travels, Valery's class fades in with no clear beginning except my introduction of Valery and the standard recitation of his bio. At Infinity Ballet, the young students practiced a bow to the teacher. Many of the students demonstrated great poise and coordination.

Both of the classes went very well, and we hope to have another opportunity to visit this studio.