I've been counting down the days until I leave for a while now. But with only four days left, the fact that I'm moving to Russia (RUSSIA WOW) is becoming more and more real by the second. I think if this training opportunity was something that I had been working towards for years I would feel more prepared, less anxious. But this is just my pipe dream. Pipe dreams don't come true. Except this one did, and every day I wake up overwhelmed by the fact that I am indeed going to the Bolshoi Ballet Academy.
When I was eleven, watching YouTube videos of Svetlana Zakharova and Diana Vishneva was my life. Entranced by their beauty, long, thin limbs and expressive faces, I made a resolution to dance just like them someday. So some how, through my crazy younger years and a crippling love/hate relationship with ballet, I was blessed with this amazing opportunity. You see, my original plan was to audition for the Bolshoi Ballet Summer Intensive just to get it out of the way, assuming they wouldn't be interested in me. I just wanted to get the "what if I did make it?" Out of my head. And, I had a horrible audition. Absolutely, horridly, embarrassingly bad. But two weeks later I was in a hotel room with my mother, tears in my eyes because I had received an email asking me to attend the summer intensive.
Now, the intensive was another story. Two days into the six week program, I was pulled aside by the director and was unceremoniously told that I was being moved down from the highest level into a lower skill class. My earlier fears that they didn't want me and weren't interested in my dancing returned and further pushed any wish I had of ever getting asked to attend the academy far out of my mind. But you see, when the program ended and it was time to go home, another surprising email came in. Crying for the better part of two days with equal parts shock, fear and confusion, we finally made the choice to start aggressive fund raising. I was going to Moscow, Russia to be one out of twelve Americans, one hundred international students and seven hundred students total, at this world renowned ballet academy. So here I am. Stressed and panicking but wildly happy.