3 years ago this month, I took my first ballet class. I was 25 years old. What can you do when you start ballet at 25 years old? This post is a little bit of recap about what has happened in the past 3 years.
I very easily could have been mad about not starting ballet younger and missing out on all the great opportunities that ballet has for guys. Instead, I tried to help other guys recognize the opportunities ballet offers. In doing so, I’ve come across many opportunities.
In the 3 years I’ve been doing ballet, my confidence has grown and I feel happier. I enjoy taking part in dance. I don’t have anymore natural ability than the average person, but I’ve been working hard. I fit in as many classes as I can, usually 4 or 5 a week. I’ve performed in shows per year since I began. I started out with very small parts, and have worked up to solos. This has been in a local pre-professional company. I do not get paid, but get my classes paid for, and get the opportunity to perform in front of crowds up to 1,000 people. I’ve also had the opportunity to perform in many different dance festivals.
After a couple of years, I started BalletForMen.com to try and inform other guys interested in dance. The site has slowly grown, and received a lot of great feedback. I receive many e-mails and comments from other guys who were inspired and began taking dance. I’m glad to have contributed at all to that. I’ve been fortunate enough to help some great people with their own websites, as there are multiple other websites that I’ve been hosting for other authors. I believe that this helps to create a stronger online dance community.
Through this blog, I’ve also published Ballet Apparel for Men: A Complete Beginner’s Guide, started HD Wear, a dance t-shirt company, and started to teach dance to elementary school boys at my local studio. While working to become a public school teacher, learning dance has also helped me to integrate arts into the public school curriculum, and teach dance classes at a local performing arts public school.
I’ve also met some of the greatest people I know, including my girlfriend of over 2 years who I met while we performed together. And throughout all of this, I’ve been learning and crafting something I love. I’ve learned to express through dance what I could never say with words.
This is not a post to brag, but a post to answer the question of “What can a 25 year old late-starter in ballet do?” The answer to that is a lot more than you would ever imagine.