What “Ritz” Means To Me

I lay in bed at 8:26 p.m. An early Tap Ensemble practice awaits me on the other side of the pillow in the morning.

Tomorrow, we’re scheduled to give some extra practice to our rendition of “Putting On The Ritz.”

Something that has been on my mind quite a bit lately has been how I feel about the piece. This has probably arisen because I’ve given the piece a little extra practice at home (my landlords will LOVE the look of the carpet thanks to my tap shoes *wink*). I saw on Pinterest or some a meme that had a ballet dancer in full splits but balanced on a single leg. The caption read “Don’t practice it until you get it right. Practice it until you can’t get it wrong.”

That’s an attitude I’ve tried toward lately.

As I lay here though, reflecting on my thoughts, I find I know how I feel about our version of “Ritz.”

“Ritz” to me is a connection to the bigger art. The music is traditional and common. As I’ve searched the web and youtube for videos of tap dancers, I’ve found a number of renditions, both by youth studios and studios like Tapestry Dance Company, the studio I hope to train in after I graduate college, Lord willing.

So this piece has meaning to me.

It reminds me that as Dancers, and Tap Dancers specifically, we are all connected. It’s a piece that ties us together in tradition, whether it’s being performed by us in a small gymnasium in a Kansas town of less than 1000 people or whether it’s being performed for that same number every night for a month on Broadway.

Not all renditions of it are the same, some are drastically different from ours, but everyone seems to have their own form of the piece.

I think I’ll keep that in mind when I get to the studio tomorrow. 🙂

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