December 7, 2015
One of the most important parts of our job is to take care of our bodies so we can perform our best every single show, and the best way to do that is to make sure that we are properly warmed up. On a typical day after we do hair, make up and rotations we have a designated warm up time. It starts at half hour call and it is up to us to make sure we take full advantage of the time! Usually everyone finds a spot backstage to use for their warm up but it’s a real treat when some theaters have a big massive warm up room with mirrors and proper floors! Sometimes we have a group warm up led by one of our dance captains but on most days they trust us to warm up ourselves and we are definitely up to the challenge.
Everyone warms up differently and I think it is very important to know your own body and to know what works best for you. For example Katie Hands, Emma Warren and myself like to run through all of the seven traditional set dances to get our legs moving and dancing before we sit and stretch for the remainder of the warm up time. This week I decided to go around and ask the rest of cast what they do to warm up!
Along with many other dancers, dance captain Brendan Dorris can always be found skipping rope to get his muscles going and his heart rate up. Sometimes walking backstage can be tricky because you have to dodge between all the jump ropes!
Maggie Darlington always does a lot of yoga stretches to make sure she is nice and limber before going onstage. She even carries around her own yoga mat to use backstage!
John Lonergan and Stephen Brennan are usually off teaching each other steps and you can often see them busting out a full Jig and set dance before every show.
And don’t forget our amazing band! They have to warm up too. You can usually hear Isaac Alderson warming up in the stairwell or hallway side stage to make sure he is ready for the show and it is hard to escape the from the sound of Mark Alfred warming up on the drum kit!
A lot of the dancers in the troupe like to trade rhythms, try new moves and to just dance around side stage to get moving but we all have to be careful to stop making noise at the 5 minute call because that means the show is about to begin and the audience might hear us! What do you do to warm up before dancing or exercising? Any tips for us? Tell us in the comments!
Riverdance takes on Halloween!