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The day of my first performance

Finally, much to our surprise and joy, the company finally arranged two different casts for the ballet Les Noces of the program Cherkaoui/Goecke/Lidberg. We had a stage dress rehearsal last Friday afternoon, and knowing well that our first performance will be on Monday, I couldn’t stop worrying about it last weekend.

Indeed, Monday had been an intense day. Apart from the first performance of the second cast, it was also the day of a Chinese New Year reception organised by Hong Kong Economic and Trade Office at the Intercontinental Grand Hotel to which I was invited, just next to Opera Garnier. I wouldn’t want to miss this occasion to meet my Hong Kong friends who are living in Paris, the Hong Kong community and to see the performance by talented Hong Kong artists/musicians.

Salon Opera, Intercontinental Hotel Paris

The reception starts at 18h30, and I had to be at Opera Garnier at 19h latest, since the performance starts at 19h30. At the end, I decided to attend the reception from 18h30 to 19h. My sleep quality is not so great recently, perhaps because of the nerves, so I was a little bit worried that I would be too tired…. but I didn’t want to miss anything!

On Monday morning, I told myself, “one thing at a time”. Whenever I am overwhelmed by my schedule, a good mental remedy for me is to stay very focus, doing one thing after another, and to be very rational. I went to morning warm up class, did my cool down, get prepared and ready for studio rehearsal at 14h, then put on my costume (for the first time!), did the stage dress rehearsal, when I encountered difficulties with certain steps or musicality or with my partner, since we didn’t have much time to practice, I tried my best to be incredibly calm and rational: “Ok, this didn’t work. Why didn’t it work? How to resolve the problem? Then try again. Okay, that’s the solution.”

At 16h30, I was physically tired from the dress rehearsal. I gently rolled out my tensed-up muscles with my foam roller and did some stretching in my changing room, went to the canteen to eat a little. Then had a nap.

At 18h10 it’s time to go to the reception. I got dressed up, and it’s just next door.

A Cafe inside the Grand Hotel

I walked (in quite a fast pace) into the beautiful Intercontinental Hotel and each time I got amazed by the beautiful settings and serein atmosphere.

Ceiling of the Salon Opera

This time, the event was held in the Salon Opera, the biggest and the finest of the Hotel. I have never been here before, and was right the way impressed by the breathtaking ceiling. Hidden beautiful places are everywhere in Paris!

It’s time, it’s 19h! I had to go back to Opera for the show. I quickly gathered my thoughts and prepared myself physically and mentally for my first performance.

Makeup session inside Opera Garnier

What I really love at the Paris Opera Ballet is the make-up and hairstyling personnel. It was so nice to see them again, I hadn’t seen them since La Dame aux Camélias. That definitely helped me to overcome a part of my nerves. I put on my costume, when to the Foyer de la Danse for warm up, then go~ Show time.

Finally, much to my relieve, the show went very well for the second cast, and I enjoyed dancing in this ballet. I appreciate this opportunity to be on stage again. My look in this contemporary production is very Japanese, a little manga-feel, with sakura prints on my pink T-shirt and the preferred leaving my now-a-little-too-long hair as in the photo.

I walked out the Opera, I was then starving. I joined some of my Hong Kong friends who just left the reception at the Hotel, for a late dinner in a nice Chinese restaurant.

6 thoughts on “The day of my first performance

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  1. Cherkaoui, Goegke, Lidberg: Impressions! 😉

    J’étais donc au Palais Garnier ce soir, 1ère place en baignoire assez proche de la scène, c’était parfait pour voir.
    -Faun en ouverture était beau, le duo très émouvant et les deux danseurs ont visiblement déjà leur fan-club, si j’en crois les réactions de la salle à la fin!
    -Dogs Sleep était, pour moi, plus difficile à appréhender et m’a moins touché, mais par contre j’ai eu le bonheur de ré-entendre le magnifique “fêtes” de Debussy que j’aime beaucoup et que l’orchestre a très bien joué;
    -Les Noces sont une performance impressionnante tant pour les danseurs que pour les musiciens ( j’avoue que je ne connaissais pas cette oeuvre de Stravinsky), et avec en plus l’heureuse surprise de vous voir danser 🙂 , j’avais cru comprendre que n’étiez pas programmé ce soir… j’ai donc mal compris 😉 . J’ai admiré le travail de précision avec ce rythme très soutenu, j’imagine qu’à la fin on est particulièrement épuisé.
    Bravo encore donc Chun et reposez vous bien pour la prochaine!


    1. Oh! Merci Martin de votre message et votre avis sur ce programme! Non, ce n’est pas un ballet particulièrement épuisant, mais en termes de précision c’est assez difficile à tout caler parfaitement 😉


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