What Do You Mean You Can’t Dance? You’re A Dancer!

It’s every former ballerina’s worst nightmare: you’re heading to the club with the girls – three glasses of wine in – and Work starts playing. Before you know it your friends are up, twerking and grinding, and there you are, sheepishly remaining in your seat, downing the remainder of the glass, waiting for the inevitable “Come on Ali, get up and dance”, and honestly…


I mean, I can dance – I’m a good dancer, if it involves pliés in fifth or a grande battement exercise (and, let’s face it, pleaing in second resembles a duck laying an egg – hardly the look we’re going for!) Years and years of being told in ballet that “you’re not waiting for the bus – you’re dancing, look sharp’ did not in any way prepare me for club dancing. I just can’t move my body freely! My limbs literally reject every attempt to dance freely. My mind refuses to allow me to dance without a count of 5,6,7,8 in my head as I go.

“Mate, come on get up!”

Okay, so maybe I’m a little drunk and don’t need too much convincing. I still repeat “but I can’t dance!”

“What do you mean you can’t dance? You’re a dancer, don’t be silly!”… and then my friends remember what I dance like in the club.

After several frustrating attempts, my friend finally helped me grasp the very basics of ‘winding’ (or, at least something that mildly resembled the move). It’s almost as if my brain can’t communicate properly with my bum to move it! Ballet will never catch on to the Kim K booty trend; whilst the rest of us were doing our squats to get that bum, for the last fifteen years of my life I’ve been “tucking that bum in” – making it invisible, despite the fact I’m squeezing the muscles so tight through a changement exercise I’m convinced it’s about to fall off.

Maybe it’s the perfectionist in me thinking about every move, but I just can’t let loose! The old phrase “trust me – you can dance, sincerely, Vodka” still applies – I’m thinking channel your inner Beyonce but my body thinks channel your inner Darcey Bussell! Luckily, after pre-drinks, once in the club, I forget just how bad my club dancing is…only to be reminded the next morning via snapchat. Brilliant.

Although I learned the discipline of ballet, the poise seems a little bit lost.

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