Mona Loverly: Cirque du Slay Performer Spotlight

Mona Loverly is a lady with many talents and a hip-shaking sensation! She is a special effects makeup artist and a haunt actor at Woods of Terror! Find her on Instagram at mjislovd. I can’t wait to see what she has cooked up for us!

Cirque du Slay workshops and show are on October 27th, 2019. Early BAT pricing ends TUESDAY!!!

Hurry and get your tickets today!

Abby Hylton: Cirque du Slay Performer Spotlight

Durham-based Abby Hylton is a circus artist specializing in trapeze and contortion. Sometimes playful, sometimes unsettling, but always evocative and always lovely, Abby draws audiences by opening up and inviting them into a world of confidence, grace, and strength.

You can find her on Instagram at: absonsteel

Cirque du Slay workshops and show are on October 27th, 2019. Early BAT pricing ends TUESDAY!!!

Hurry and get your tickets today!

Dakota Fox: Cirque du Slay Performer Spotlight

Mover. Shaker. Mischief Maker. Dakota has been training in pole, dance & nearly every form of movement for the past ten years. She has traveled, taught, & performed internationally... but performing at home will always be her favorite. Dakota is honored to be a part of the debut Cirque du Slay event and share the spotlight with such a diverse range of talent!

She is also an event sponsor, providing us with the venue for our workshops and show! She is the owner of Aradia Fitness in Cary. Once you see her perform, you will likely be inspired to take a class!

Find her on Instagram: @dakotafox84

Facebook: facebook.com/dakotafoxfitpro/

Cirque du Slay workshops and show are on October 27th, 2019. Early BAT pricing ends TUESDAY!!!

Hurry and get your tickets today!

Lady Gatita: Cirque du Slay Performer Spotlight

Lady Gatita is the Nerd-Mama of Nerd-Vana, Raleigh's Longest Running Nerdlesque show. She is a Burlesque Performer, fire dancer, flow artist and cosplayer. She currently holds the title of Master of Amazement at the North Carolina Burlypicks competition.

Learn more about her on Facebook!

Cirque du Slay workshops and show are on October 27th, 2019. Early BAT pricing ends TUESDAY!!!

Hurry and get your tickets today!

Ruined by Art: Cirque du Slay Sponsor Spotlight

Business support for the arts makes it possible for artists to produce events that enrich the community. For this reason, Idiosyncrasy Performance Collaborative wishes to extend our deepest thanks to the sponsors of Cirque du Slay.

Robin is an artist who tattoos at Conspiracy Ink Tattoos in Raleigh, NC and does freelance graphic design. She can be reached at conspiracyinktattoos@yahoo.com or ruinedbyart.com. Robin helped bring together 3 of the members of Idiosyncrasy Performance Collective (Lisa, Kellyanne and Tallulah) and you can see her work at the show displayed on all of our bodies!

Cirque du Slay is an event produced by Lisa Allred Dance and Idiosyncrasy Performance Artist Collective. In this series of blogs, we will be introducing our talented Idiosyncrasy instructors and all of our invited performers. For more info on the workshops and show, visit www.lisaallreddance.com.

https://www.instagram.com/ruinedbyart/

Adora: Cirque du Slay Performer Spotlight

Liz Adora Waddell is a Cirque du Slay instructor, performer and a member of Idiosyncrasy Performance Artist Collaborative. She is excited to share her love of Pole Dancing with the Performing Artist Collective!  She is a pole dance instructor at Aradia Fitness Cary and spends as much time as possible upside down. Liz is also a Doctor of Physical Therapy who works with dancers and athletes to keep their bodies in tip top performance condition.  She is the owner of Art of Movement Physical Therapy in downtown Cary. 

Liz will be teaching Pole Dance-inspired Floorwork. Floor-based movement is a common component of pole dance performance that contrasts the height achieved on the pole.  In this workshop, we will explore the use of gravity and momentum to create fluid movement that enables the body to move on the floor with ease. 

*As we will be dancing on the floor, you will be most comfortable in clothing that covers the shoulders and thighs.  Knee pads recommended, but not required. 

Belly Dance Business Academy

Business support for the arts makes it possible for artists to produce events that enrich the community. For this reason, Idiosyncrasy Performance Collaborative wishes to extend our deepest thanks to the sponsors of Cirque du Slay.

The title says bellydance, but the content is for all artists! Get the tools, training, and support you need to build you belly dance business. The BDBA is owned by Terri Allred, Lisa’s sister, who has donated her time to manage this event online through her Eventbright account and in person the day of the workshops and show. Thanks Terri!

Cirque du Slay is an event produced by Lisa Allred Dance and Idiosyncrasy Performance Artist Collective. In this series of blogs, we will be introducing our talented Idiosyncrasy instructors and all of our invited performers. For more info on the workshops and show, visit www.lisaallreddance.com.

Dayanisma: Cirque du Slay Performer Spotlight

Dayanisma is a professional bellydance troupe directed by Dawn Ruckert and Lisa Allred. The mission of the troupe is to convey their joy and love of dance in a way that is felt as well as seen. These world-renowned performers will be dividing up (the 11 troupe members won’t all fit on the stage) and presenting two performances— one fast-paced crowd favorite and the other… well, they apologize in advance for the nightmares.

Giving and Receiving Feedback

I have taught graduate students in social work off and on for two decades. One advantage that I have with them that I don’t have with dance students is that I can take the first hour and set expectations around giving and receiving feedback. In a dance class, you can talk (maybe) 5 min before everyone gets antsy. And with good reason, it is a dance class! But being open to feedback, knowing how to thankfully and graciously accept it, and being savvy about evaluating the merit of the feedback, is just as important for a dance student as it is for a graduate student.

Because I teach graduate students, I also know to back up what I say with social science research. I know that is tedious to include in a blog, so message me if you want my sources, but for now, just know that my suggestions are well-researched.

Research on Feedback

•       Experts in their field (including advanced dancers) want to hear how they can improve, even if feedback is “negative”

•       People still mastering a skill want praise

•       The dilemma is that research shows that only praise (without critique) doesn’t improve performance

How to give good feedback

Think for a moment about the times you have been given feedback. You can probably identify some things that worked well and some things that did not. I imagine that your experience will align with these guidelines.

•       Be specific, “when you turn with a Turkish, you lose your hip shimmy”

•       Be immediate, while the details are fresh

•       Tie feedback to goals, “I know one of your goals is to improve your shimmy, I see that you are dropping it when you turn using a Turkish, lets look at some ways to work on that”

•       Ensure feedback is actionable, instead of “it just doesn’t make me excited to watch you dance” say “making occasional eye contact and smiling directly at an audience member is one way to engage the audience”

•       Use encouraging words like “and” or “what if”, “what if we could make your shimmy look big enough for a large stage?”

•       Ask if the person prefers feedback in private and respect that

Feedback is useful when it is given in the context of a trusting relationship, with care, with the intention to be helpful, and directly to the person. If you are talking about someone outside of their presence or not directly to them, it isn’t feedback, and it should not be mistaken as such. Saying negative things about someone is not constructive— it tears down trust and relationships. The result of well-delivered feedback is just the opposite.

Research on the feedback sandwich

Many of us have read about or been trained to do the “feedback sandwich” but it isn’t an effective way to give feedback. People don’t hear the positive because they are bracing for negative. Also, people only remember first and last parts of the conversation, so your feedback gets lost.

Instead:

•       Remind people that you are giving them feedback because you have high expectations and are confident that they can reach them

•       Remind people that you have really benefited from feedback before so you are trying to pay it forward

•       Ask the person if they want the feedback before you start, ““I noticed a couple things and wondered if you’re interested in some feedback”

•       Tell them what you like about something they are doing and then say “I would like it even more if…”

Accepting Feedback: in the moment

Accepting feedback can be very challenging. I generally do well with it unless I am upset about something else or really tired. Here are some tips for appreciating and maximizing the benefit you will get from the feedback you receive.

•       Listen

•       Resist the urge to prepare a response

•       If you are feeling defensive, pause before responding

•       Pause can be temporary or you can request to think about it and talk again later

•       OK to ask for examples, OK to take notes

•       Assume it is constructive unless proven otherwise

•       Respect and thank the person giving feedback

•       Avoid getting angry, making excuses, or being disrespectful

If people don’t give you feedback, maybe some self-reflection would be beneficial. Are you asking for feedback? Do you accept it gracefully? Do you make excuses or get angry? Is there something about your behavior that signals you are not open to hearing feedback?

Once you have received feedback, you have to evaluate it. If you are not sure if you agree, spend some time…

Reflecting on Feedback

•       Survey trusted friends to get their opinions

•       Decide if you want to make any changes based on the info you gathered

•       If so, create a plan to make changes

Giving and receiving feedback is a challenging issue at all levels of dance.  I would love to hear how you would expand on these tips! Are there strategies that have worked for you (on the giving or receiving end)?

Asyia the Seeker: Cirque du Slay Performer Spotlight

Asyia fills your world with images from the Orient and the fusion of modern international dance: assorted themed costumes, glitter, a radiance of colors & FIRE. Her sharp, controlled muscular movements, layering, keen musical awareness, and vivacious enthusiasm for the art of dance shine each time she performs. For more info or to book a performance, you can contact her through Imagine Circus.

Art of Movement Physical Therapy: Cirque du Slay Sponsor Spotlight

Business support for the arts makes it possible for artists to produce events that enrich the community. For this reason, Idiosyncrasy Performance Collaborative wishes to extend our deepest thanks to the sponsors of Cirque du Slay.

Many thanks to Liz Waddell, Idiosyncrasy member and Physical Therapist extraordinaire! In addition to the countless hours she has spent organizing this event, she is keeping many local performers at the top of their game, including me.

Art of Movement Physical Therapy provides exceptional, individualized care to maximize each person’s ability to meet their desired physical potential.

  • injury prevention

  • rehabilitation

  • performance optimization

Schedule a complimentary phone or in-person consultation to discuss your specific goals

Evening and weekend appointments available for your convenience.

Cirque du Slay is an event produced by Lisa Allred Dance and Idiosyncrasy Performance Artist Collective. In this series of blogs, we will be introducing our talented Idiosyncrasy instructors and all of our invited performers. For more info on the workshops and show, visit www.lisaallreddance.com.

Alan Trammel Photography: Cirque du Slay Sponsor Spotlight

Business support for the arts makes it possible for artists to produce events that enrich the community. For this reason, Idiosyncrasy Performance Collaborative wishes to extend our deepest thanks to the sponsors of Cirque du Slay.

Alan is our official event photographer (and Lisa’s main squeeze). In addition to photographing events, he offers headshots and has a beautiful selection of landscape photo art available on his website. He is also a realtor of 20 years who also has his home inspector and contractor’s licences!

Cirque du Slay is an event produced by Lisa Allred Dance and Idiosyncrasy Performance Artist Collective. In this series of blogs, we will be introducing our talented Idiosyncrasy instructors and all of our invited performers. For more info on the workshops and show, visit www.lisaallreddance.com.

Kellyanne Lee: Cirque du Slay Performer Spotlight

Kellyanne Lee is a member of Idiosyncrasy Performance Collective and will be teaching and performing at Cirque du Slay. She is a newcomer queen who performs at Flex Nightclub & Bar and can be see with Magnolias and Ducttape. She also performs at bachelorette parties, birthdays, and other special events. Her goal is “just trying to make the world a better pace one show at a time.”

Kellyanne will be teaching A Drag Queen’s Do and Don’t of Stage Make-up. She will be demonstrating the use of foundation, contour and highlight. We are holding this workshop at the end of the day so that you can use your new make-up skills for the show that evening. (Please bring foundation, contour, highlight, brushes and or sponges.)

Cirque du Slay is an event produced by Lisa Allred Dance and Idiosyncrasy Performance Artist Collective. In this series of blogs, we will be introducing our talented Idiosyncrasy instructors and all of our invited performers. For more info on the workshops and show, visit www.lisaallreddance.com.

Ivy Sublime: Cirque du Slay Performer Spotlight

Ivy Sublime is a burlesque babe & boudoir model who has performed with a number of troupes and shows all over the Triangle and Triad. Her performance style is inspired by surrealism and fantasy. With elaborate costuming and theatrics, Ivy will razzle, dazzle, and mystify - she is the Subliminal Seductress!

Ivy performs frequently with Succubus Review at Legends Nightclub in Raleigh, NC at their regularly scheduled show every third Thursday.

Cirque du Slay is an event produced by Lisa Allred Dance and Idiosyncrasy Performance Artist Collective. In this series of blogs, we will be introducing our talented Idiosyncrasy instructors and all of our invited performers. For more info on the workshops and show, visit www.lisaallreddance.com.

Aradia Fitness Cary: Cirque du Slay Sponsor Spotlight

Business support for the arts makes it possible for artists to produce events that enrich the community. For this reason, Idiosyncrasy Performance Collaborative wishes to extend our deepest thanks to the sponsors of Cirque du Slay.

Aradia Fitness in Cary is both the location of our workshops and show and a sponsor of our event. Aradia studio locations create a  growing community of fabulous, like-minded, powerful persons who are changing and empowering their lives. Their classes are offered in fun, supportive, non-judgmental environments and are comprised of persons from all walks of life – you can expect to see all ages, shapes & sizes in their studios! Aradia Fitness is not just about pole dancing, and it never will be… it is about a building a strong community and providing the motivation & support you need as you begin your movement journey.

Aradia teachers are featured in the Cirque du Slay event. Liz, a teacher at Aradia, is a member of Idiosyncrasy who will be teaching and performing. Dakota, the studio owner, and Ria X, another Aradia instructor, are both performing in the show!

Cirque du Slay is an event produced by Lisa Allred Dance and Idiosyncrasy Performance Artist Collective. In this series of blogs, we will be introducing our talented Idiosyncrasy instructors and all of our invited performers. For more info on the workshops and show, visit www.lisaallreddance.com.

Why You Should Come to Dance Class Even if You Are Injured!

I have a lot of experience with being injured and returning to dance. The last decade has been one long string of body parts giving out. Being injured causes physical and emotional pain. The physical pain is obvious, but the emotional pain is no less real. Missing performances, having to sit on the sidelines at rehearsal, not feeling like a contributing member can all wear on a dancer’s self-esteem and mood. I have spent some time recently investigating “best practices” around injured dancers and want to offer some suggestions for ways an injured dancer can keep learning, participating and feeling connected in class and troupe rehearsal. First, we will look at how you can physically continue participating? Second, if you must sit out, how can you make use of that time to improve your dance. Third, how can you also use that time observing to benefit your teacher, the class/and or the troupe?

1- Physical participation

There are several strategies you can use to make decisions about physical participation.

Medical Advice: At the post-op apt after my hip replacement, the surgeon and I danced. I stood up and showed him the movements I needed to do and he stood up and showed me what I needed to avoid. Between that meeting and similar sessions with a physical therapist, I returned to dance with very clear instructions about movement. If you are injured, ask your medical providers for suggestions on modifying movement and share those suggestions with your teacher.

Pain Free Range of Motion: Basically, don’t do anything that hurts!

Modify Movements: This means reducing the difficulty of the movements, modifying your exertion level or otherwise limiting your participation in order to allow your body time to heal. In other styles of dance, “marking” the movement is more common than it seems to be in ATS®. Marking is a great alternative to dancing “full out” both for dancers who are injured and for dancers who are tired and therefore more susceptible to injuries.

Remove weight bearing: Can you sit and continue to do upper body movements while decreasing the load on your lower body? Are there alternative movements that can train your body in the same way but can be done on the ground or in a chair? Ask your physical therapist and your dance teacher for help figuring this out.

2- Mental Rehearsal

Mental rehearsal is a strategy used by professional athletes and sports psychologists to enable high performing athletes to benefit from practice without adding strain to their bodies… again, both preventing and dealing with injuries. There is an abundance of evidence that this is an effective strategy to improve performance! The evidence supports that mental rehearsal helps you maintain neuromuscular connections and refine your movements. It can also help you analyze your personal dance habits and technique.

Mental rehearsal is most effective when the dancer alternates between 2 different perspectives.

Kinesthetic Practice: When you visualize yourself executing the movement from the inside.

Visual Practice: When you visualize yourself executing the movement from the outside, as if you are viewing a movie.

While visualizing, notice the cues and instructions you give yourself about doing the movement. Recording those mental cues and instructions is one more way you can deepen the benefits of this strategy.

3- Written Class Observation

Observing class allows you to recognize how your movements can be improved and identify strategies for change by watching how other dancers execute the movements you have trouble doing. You can also assist your teacher and the other students by noticing strengths and opportunities for improvement within individual dancers or the class. Here are some questions you can consider while you are watching.

What general or individual feedback comments did the teacher make.  How does this feedback apply to you? 

What do you see in your classmates that you can apply to yourself?

Are there any students in the class who are inspiring to you?  Why, specifically?

What do you notice about the relationship between the music and the movement?  How are individual dancers responding to the music?  Is there anything specific you want to emulate?

There are so many great ways to make use of class time, even if you can’t dance. Physically participating is not the only way to benefit personally or add value to a class or troupe. By appreciating the abundance of ways you can contribute even if you are injured, I hope students and troupe members will be encouraged to take time to heal and to feel great about it!

Reference

Tallulah Bordeaux: Cirque du Slay Performer Spotlight

A belly dance and burlesque instructor and performer, Tallulah Bordeaux has been dancing her way across the south east and shimmying her way into people’s hearts for almost 20 years. She is the producer of Blue Zone Burlesque, a Burlesque variety show in Chapel Hill, NC. Shared community, body positivity and personal expression are the elements that drew her to Burlesque and Belly Dance.

Tallulah will be teaching an Introduction to Burlesque, a workshop celebrating finding your voice on stage and refining moves to improve your dance. She will also be performing in the evening show.

Cirque du Slay is an event produced by Lisa Allred Dance and Idiosyncrasy Performance Artist Collective. In this series of blogs, we will be introducing our talented Idiosyncrasy instructors and all of our invited performers. For more info on the workshops and show, visit www.lisaallreddance.com.