Melissa Marino

Dance has always been an important aspect of my life. For as long as I can remember, I have been dancing. My mom used to put tapes of old movie musicals in the VCR (yes, that’s right… the VCR) and I used to dance around in front of the TV. I was particularly fond of Mary Poppins and Meet Me In St. Louis. I idolized Julie Andrews and Judy Garland, but I loved Cinderella too. My obsession with musicals is what made my parents decide to put me into ballet classes.

Like most dance studios, we ended our year with a dance recital. Although I do not have a clear memory of my first dance recital, I have been told that it was an interesting performance.

As “The Bear Went Over The Mountain” played in the background, we lined up across the width of the stage to perform our pliĆ©s and tendus in our little tutus. However, my friend was standing in my spot on the line and I was not pleased. So, my little four-year-old self decided that the best thing to do at this moment would be to shout into the wings, “MS. KIM! GILLIAN IS IN MY SPOT!” Clearly, it didn’t matter to me that we were on stage.

All the parents and grandparents in the audience got a kick out of me innocently embarrassing myself. I would never dare do anything like that today, but it definitely reminds me of my childhood innocence. My first dance recital did not go as planned, but at least I have a funny story to share!