Tuesday 22 November 2011

Deaf Girl learns to tap

Last week I missed my tap class. 

It was too cold, I was too tired, I had stuff to do.

The reality is that all of the above were just excuses as I'm actually finding tap quite hard now I'm six lessons in.

While this may be because I have the coordination of a drunk newborn foal, last night I went along to check, and actually it's not that.

During the class, I looked at what I was struggling at and what I could do. Anything with just toes was fine but whenever any heel tapping occurred I got hopelessly lost, despite the fact I was watching my teacher's feet like a hawk.

So then instead of staring at her feet, I decided to stare at her face so I might grasp what she was saying. Of course, to do this means I couldn't dance at the same time, but what I realised is that she's calling out a drill while our feet going. She's saying 'toe, heel, swish, heel, toe, heel, toe stamp' or whatever and so people are listening to that while copying her feet.

I can only have one or the other.

It was so frustrating. However, I persevered through the wanting-to-cry part and tried my hardest to be upbeat about the whole thing, and it kind of worked.

By pushing through the fug of failure, I realised that I will grasp it – but to do so, I will just have to learn what the teacher is saying so that while I'm looking at her feet, I can be saying it to myself in my head.

Even better, I've made a new friend – yes I'm 5 – and she's going to buy the biggest bit of wood she can find for her kitchen and we are going to practise together.

I won't give this up, because you see, if I can work out the method to learning tap when you're deaf, it will give me a valuable skill that I can apply to learning other kinds of dance, too.

The world will be my dance floor.

Well, let's take it one tap at a time, eh?


BigBro said...

Your neighbour will love you!

Me said...

more than she does already!!!!

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