Social Media and Dance Performance

February 19, 2019

In light of articles written surrounding Social Media over the last year, I thought I would weigh in on the instagram hype.

Maybe it is now satisfying to post on social media, yet as many have suggested it is a double edged sword. Personally, at Science in Dance we use Instagram and Facebook to share informative visual content of Dancers taking positive steps within in Cross-Training and Dance Specific Training. Yet to be perfectly honest, we spend a good proportion of our time giving perspective to young Dancers and encouraging positive social media usage. However, there is more that needs to be done when it comes to how young Dancers learn and reflect on their performance in virtual world of constant comparison. 

 

So the purpose of this article is to give insight in to some old discussions on reflective practise and how to positively reinforce the process that Dancers endure whilst improving as Artists.

 

Over the last year, Dancers that have worked 1 to 1 with us will have experienced a training session that follows practise or rehearsal at the end of the day. Often, the approach to that training session can be determined by how the day has gone. So what started as a simple exercise to help Dancers reflect positively on a day of dancing turned into a continuous tool that can help Dancers sift their way through the trials and tribulations of social media exposure. 

 

I am sure some Dancers have heard the line... "If you spent as much time practising as you do on social media..." finish the sentence however you like...

I think the remark is harsh... I believe some Dancers maybe stuck in a wheel of comparison... but not one where they compare their own solo from last week to this week... rather the following...

 

The wheel of comparison whereby rehearsal is done for the day and we go home and spend an hour scrolling through instagram looking at other people Dancing (showing their best not their worst). Only to then contemplate whether or not we can perform what we have just seen. The more we watch... the more mountains we feel their are to climb as every Social Media Dancer is doing a different variation in a different way and all of a sudden we lose complete sight over how we are meant to perform something ourselves.

 

Upon, investigation "chatting to a few Dancers" I was shown that this habit is hard to break and asking youngsters to down the social media accounts in the evening was a BIG ASK...

 

Nevertheless... I decided I would touch a small task that I was set in the world of International Sport as a Rower with Oxford Brookes University. With Dancers that I coach I often reflect on my time as an Athlete, not to tell them about my sporting successes but more often about the harder times and the emotions one can feel that,  although are not Dance related, are applicable to Dancers