Testimonials Sweden Masterclasses 2011

This is what the visitors of the Sweden Zouk congress think of the "Good 2 Great" Masterclasses

Note that the students vary from beginners to young professionals.

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By Leah in Shade on 1 May 2012 at 19:05

Masterclass ....

On Friday September 2nd I began Kwok’s Masterclass before I even got to the venue. For starters, once I arrived to the metro station, I went the wrong general direction, although my inner GPS insisted on going the other way. I didn’t listen to it even the second time, when I passed the right turn and walked further than needed. Within the short 10 minutes that I spent trying to get to the venue, I managed to both fail miserably in something I am usually very good at - navigation, even in unfamiliar settings – and disagree with my intuition…

The class has quickly filled with dancers from all around, smiles and expectation of something yet unexperienced. Unlike many other expectations, this one was met – beyond and above. Through a series of exercises, we were led outside of the comfort zones that limit us inside, not only as dancers. The afternoon thus was a mixture of fun, exploration, communication with one’s inner creativity and, most importantly, fear.

The fear was not the justified kind – as when you are chased down by a school of hungry piranhas and you realize you’re all of a sudden unable to swim. The fear was the illusory kind of fear – that one that keeps you from expanding your boundaries, overcoming yourself, going further and finally reaching destination “inner fulfillment”. Despite the ‘safe’ environment – where we all were doing the same silly things for the same important purpose – it was hard for some to let go, to switch off the ceaseless chatter of the brain that filters out so urgently needed fresh voice of the true self.

The fear was that of inadequacy, of imperfection, of failure… But that fear is more dangerous than it seems – it is often paralyzing, from inside. In the Western society, we are often discouraged from failing, from doing things wrong… Unfortunately, in the process of focusing on doing everything “the right way” we often either settle for mediocre results, or for ‘safe’ inaction. Instead of allowing for failure and, through that learning process, coming up with something much more amazing, we settle for the safe and the boring. Then we look at those who are amazing in something and envy them for their skills and successes… And no one ever thinks about how many times they had to miserably fail to break through this glass ceiling of averageness to become exceptional, inspiring, admired…

It is possible that most of us have survived through the masterclass with at least some, if not all, of our original fears intact. However, just like the original sin, the original fear may be also cleansed off, even though maybe not as easily as via a simple ritualized bath. After all, every long journey begins with the first few steps in the right direction. This, if anything, was the most important purpose of the masterclass – to serve as the stepping-stone on the right path. What was masked as a dance event should not be mistaken for its disguise: while the principles explored there will definitely, if applied, allow anyone to advance incredibly as a dancer, most importantly going through an event like this will allow anyone to advance as a human being.

If you still doubt that failure is THE road to success, maybe J.K. Rowling (if you have heard of such a figure) can explain it better than a short blog post in her commencement speech.

If, after all this, you feel you are finally ready to truly succeed (as in, learn to fail to begin with ), you can see what’s up at the KwokOne dance company – maybe, if you’re lucky enough, you will be just in time for the next event and/or course .

- Leah in Shade -


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