|Hike to Waterfall|
Photo by Meagan Mann
Troy and I woke to the smell of fresh coffee brewing and bacon in the oven! BalletCollective was up and preparing for our first day in Telluride.
After breakfast, on the porch with a beautiful view, we gathered our dance bags, water bottles and, of course, the oxygen tanks (to help with the altitude) and packed everything into our two rental cars. Troy drove and I worked the Sirius radio (40s on 4 or 80s on 8 were my favorites)! Before long, heading down the windy cliffs and endless fields towards Telluride, we arrived at The Palm Theater, our summer residency facility!
The Palm Theater is a lovely theater, attached to the Telluride academic school and filled with a music room, basketball courts, dressing rooms, rehearsal studios and a performance stage and theater. Brandon gave us the grand tour (he was up and at ‘em early as he had to get the stage ready for us - have lights hung, the floor cleaned, oxygen tanks filled, and marley taped) and within minutes we were settled into our dressing room and then headed to the rehearsal studio for our first ballet class at high altitude. We all grabbed a spot at the barres and began stretching, doing our individual warmups.
|Lauren under the Fall|
Photo by Ashley Laracey
Troy started class around 10:30am. (Sometimes it’s nice to stick to your normal routine, so morning class suited all of us.) Barre was tough, and center was even harder. We found ourselves out of breath after the easiest things (even walking up or down a flight of stairs). The altitude was more difficult than we had expected. I had a constant headache from the moment we landed in Montrose that lasted for 48 hours (and on and off all throughout the week) and others felt light headed or just plain exhausted. After class, and a few hits of oxygen, we walked through the three ballets in the small studio (all scheduled to be performed on August 2nd), taking it easy.
Day 1 was a light dancing day as our goal was to acclimate to the conditions. But that did not mean go back to the house and rest…Tour Guide Harrison had plans for us! We set off for a small .25 mile hike to a water fall near the theater. Some of the dancers braved the freezing cold water and stood under the water fall! We then took a gondola ride to the next mountain, and relaxed at the Mountain Peaks Spa soaking in the Jacuzzi, swimming pool and having fun on the water slide! Harrison is a pro going down that slide!
Dinner and S’mores followed! Star gazing occurred too! More soon…