7 years. 21 shows. 32 roles. And all bringing me to this year, my senior year, in my dream role with some of my dearest friends in the world. I’ve been able to take a trip through the wardrobe every December for seven years now--this will be my eighth. I started dancing at age 5, with ballet, and slowly progressed to modern, jazz, lyrical, and much more. My first year in Narnia was when I was ten, and I was a purple flower, a tea party creature, and a celebration dancer. Now, I’ve danced in nearly every scene of the show.
One of my most treasured memories is getting to be the first ever Monarch Butterfly. This role originated in 2015, and it involves a pointe solo with the cutest little 4 and 5 years olds you’ve ever seen. My favorite part about this role was how much I got to mentor and encourage the little dancers. They look up to you so much, and are so thrilled to be dancing onstage with a real live ballerina!
But it isn’t all glitter and pointe shoes. The amount of hard work that every single dancer, parent, volunteer, and choreographer put in this show is tremendous. Thought is put into every decision, every costume, every prop, every dance step that reaches the stage. And hardest of all, there are tears. Tears of disappointment, tears from injuries. The hardest moments for me were when I almost was unable to perform on pointe because of painful ankle injuries. Two years in a row, I had a pointe solo, and those same two years, I was struggling with muscles and bones in my foot being less than healthy. There were a lot of tears shed in the weeks leading up to those shows, but ultimately, I was able to perform, with a lot of athletic tape and prayer.
This year, as Susan Pevensie, the second oldest of the four children, I get to explore the character of a teenage girl who is trying very hard to protect and be a mother to her brothers and sister when in reality, she stills needs a mother of her own. As she enters Narnia, and sees the wonderful things that Aslan is doing, she slowly realizes that her brothers and sister are coming into their own, and that she needs to let go of her overprotective nature. It’s a character that is very near to my own personality, and I’ve really enjoyed playing it.
As we get to the last week of rehearsals, with long nights, and hairspray, and bobby pins, and ballet shoes, I’m so grateful to be a part of this incredible, amazing show, and all the people who work so hard to put it on. To all my fellow Narnians, I love you.
Thanks so much for sharing your wonderful, magical experience, Isabel!
So fun to see pictures & read about the life of a dancer!