Of Lincoln Center, Ballet, and Bliss

Walking toward Lincoln Center after a wonderful Thanksgiving meal, I was struck by how much I am still seduced by this city of my birth. The magic that is New York City has never been lost on me. Especially in the Lincoln Center area, that’s where I studied ballet and fell in love with it. My main passion for dance was for ballet, but I also studied Flamenco dance as a child and performed in dance recitals. This is an old photo from when I was around 8-years-old.

Looking out onto this majestic art mecca during a clear, cold Thanksgiving night filled me with bliss. I wondered why I had such a joy-filled response to this neighborhood when in fact ballet wasn’t something that I was truly built for. The hopeful anticipation of a grand ballet career I fantasized about as a student of the School of American Ballet (SAB) was stripped away when I reached the age when it was no longer possible to believe that my dream would manifest. In essence, ballet rejected me, yet I still hold the memory of its effect on me as a young girl as magical and exciting.

So I tell you: If your first dream of what you want to be in life doesn’t pan out, fret not. Because you’ll probably find that you will do well enough in some other area that you’re better suited to.  In time, you’ll confront your earlier dream and find it’s not the pain that you’re left with but the joy of the experience.

What are your own career hopes, dreams, disappointments, and joys?

Claudia MasonComment