What is INDSHIMLBWIFA?!
If you know, you know, right?
For the rest of you, I'd love to tell you about this fun tradition we have during recital week! And it's the perfect time to do so; it's our 25th Anniversary and I've been posting memories for several months now, so I'll add this tradition to the long list of fun things that happened (or continues to happen) at Premier.
Our oldest dancers have a ton of dances in the recital. If you're new to Premier, you'll see what I mean at the recital. They are at the studio three nights a week for 3+ hours each night. With learning a lot of dances comes the task of remembering and perfecting a lot of dances. Add that to school and other obligations. It's a lot. Naturally, recital week can get a little stressful. Miss Zebbi and I want to make the week fun, exciting and helpful.
Rewind all the way back to the early 2000s (unfortunately, we don't remember exactly which year it was). Every year at recital time, Miss Zebbi and I would set aside a night with our oldest dancers and have them do their dances over and over again so they felt comfortable and could really enjoy the performance. It would sometimes get crazy, as we'd have them dancing non-stop, to the point they were dripping with sweat and breathing like they had just ran a marathon.
Enter: Texting. And the use of abbreviations like LOL. It was new. It was kinda funny. And it was all the rage. Miss Zebbi and I thought it would be funny to give the night we'd set aside a ridiculous abbreviated name and some ridiculous rules & rewards. So this is what we came up with...
INDSHIMLBWIFA [ind-shim-lib-whiff-ah] stands for "I've Never Danced So Hard In My Life But Wow I Feel Awesome"
Each dance that the dancers will be performing in the recital, is written on a slip of paper and put in a bucket (it happens to be a Halloween bucket, because that's what I had on hand). The bucket has been dubbed "The Magic Pumpkin".
We draw names of dances out of the Magic Pumpkin, and that's what dance they perform. We give them little to no time to prepare, rest, or think. And here's the kicker, as soon as we draw a dance out of the Magic Pumpkin, it goes right back into the Magic Pumpkin. So, potentially you could do the same dance five times in a row. (LOL)
We hand out cards (Get Out of Dance Free cards and Ballet Fairy cards) to dancers who dance super hard and draw our attention. If you receive a Get Out of Dance Free card, you can use it at any time during the night to rest (during one dance) while your classmates keep dancing. A Ballet Fariy card is very rare. It means you out-danced everyone and exceeded our expectations. A Ballet Fairy card is very powerful and can turn any dance (drawn out of the Magic Pumpkin) into any other dance. So if you have a Ballet Fairy card and your class is supposed to do your jazz dance, you can turn that dance into the other class' jazz dance and make them dance instead.
At the end of the night, the dancers are completely exhausted, they feel incredibly confident in their dances and they're ready for recital - as well as ready for a good shower and a good night's sleep! Miss Zebbi and I take a few minutes to "deliberate" and then hand out prizes for anything from "I kicked so high I kicked my face!" to "I jumped so high I almost touched the sky" and Leadership and Positivity.
It's a fun night of dancing, bonding and creating memories. So, tonight while you're sitting peacefully reading or whatever it is you do to unwind in the evening, think of our oldest dancers as they dance until their feet fall off!