Performers with the group Quixotic have returned to Homer for shows Thursday and Friday night. The group provided workshops for residents interested in learning how to dance and perform aerial routines like members in the troupe.
There were six silks hanging from the ceiling of the Homer High School Commons Monday night. Quixotic performer Megan Stockman was demonstrating moves to a group of about 15 young girls and women. It looked effortless.
In the move she was performing, you basically create a little hammock for yourself to sit in. Other options that Stockman showed off involved tying a knot in the silk, sort of sitting in the middle like a swing, leaning back and letting the silks hold you as you dangle upside down. Or you could wrap the silks around both your arms and pitch yourself backwards to loop your legs around the material. It’s kind of hard to explain, but all the students at the workshop were picking it up pretty quickly.
The amount of muscle strength and control each person had was making a difference, and it seemed those who do yoga were transitioning well into this new aerial environment. Stockman was explaining to a small group that success comes when you focus on where you’re going; not the steps it takes to get you in the right position.
“It’s like when you’re driving. You’re not going to look immediately right down in front of the road. You’re looking up ahead of you. You’re looking at your destination rather than what’s immediately coming next,” she said.
Everyone learns this stuff differently. Stockman said one of her current students is a natural. He just clears his mind.
“His body will just let him do whatever. But some people really break it down, but they’re better at other things like transitions,” she said.
Christina Whiting said she was surprised that the workshop was so taxing on her body.
“I didn’t think it would be easy, but the upper body strength and the ab strength that’s required surprised me. But probably the biggest surprise was that it actually hurt a little bit. The material kind of rubbing on your hands and then on the back, I didn’t expect that,” she said.
Whiting said she’s one of those people that Stockman mentioned earlier. She likes to go through a move step-by-step.
“I’m a planner, but here it was kind of not doing that and just listening to your body and going for it. So that was difficult for me to just let go and go through the motion and listen to my body,” she said.
Performers also provided workshops for ballet and contemporary dance. Students from Homer, Seldovia, Port Graham, Nanwalek and the Russian villages were able to catch performances during special assemblies throughout this week. Both Thursday and Friday Quixotic shows were sold out by Monday.