Pop singer-songwriter, musician, visual artist Kira Takei
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Kira Takei

Kira's solo dance for this season


In my last blog post, I shared a bit about how dance conventions run, and in this one, I want to share a bit more about a part of it - my solo! My solo this season is self-choreographed, and has had many changes, versions, and edits done to it. I thought I could share the process behind choreographing a self-performed solo, and all the things that have happened to get it to where it is today!

The process began by selecting music. I had an idea of the style of dance I wanted to do (contemporary), so, I looked for songs that moved and inspired me. I had come across one that I really liked, and I even started choreographing to it - however, after the process continued for a bit, I no longer resonated with the song, and it didn’t feel quite right. The search for a song continued.

Many Youtube music rabbit holes later, I found the perfect song. It inspired me so much, and told a story I was moved by. I quickly got to choreographing.

(Here is the song! https://youtu.be/HNw6GYRZ040 - ‘Witching Hour’ by the Echo Collective)

Choreographing was fun, confusing, frustrating, and very educational. I learned a lot about how I create, and the mental preparation that goes into choreographing. As I had mentioned earlier, there were many, many versions of my solo - there are parts that have stayed the same since day 1, and others that are still being changed today. It’s nice to know because it’s mine, I can change it if something feels better, or makes more sense. I drew inspiration from many things for this solo - colors, memories, feelings, stories… It was so cool working with so many possibilities. As I was working, the title ‘Inflection Point’ came to me - In math/business, it refers to a point where significant change occurs. It felt very fitting for this piece’s intention and emotion, so I stuck with that as its title.

Once the choreography was finished I worked with one of my teachers, Elissa Edwards, weekly to clean it, edit some things, add some things, and go over intention and purpose. I’ve learned how important it can be to gain a second opinion, or even just have a second set of eyes working with you. It’s sometimes difficult for an artist to step back and look at their work objectively, so I’m grateful to have had someone to help me out in that sense.

The process of cleaning and refining continued, before and between competitions as well. I had performed my solo at a competition in January, and looking back at it compared to the most recent competition, it’s safe to say it was in its early stages of life. (Which is probably what i’ll say at the next competition too! It’s always growing and evolving…)

At the most recent competition/convention we went to, 24/Seven, I was so nervous to do my solo. There were so many incredibly talented artists there, and I was so scared to showcase my dance abilities, as well as choreography! I remember standing behind the wings, taking deep breaths, and completely forgetting how my solo started. I shook it out, and was reminded to trust myself - I've worked so hard on this solo, and I’m so happy with the way it has grown.

After I performed it, I felt solid. I feel like it was the best time I’ve ever done it. I was able to relax, until I remembered awards. And while awards are not the reason I dance, they’re always a little nerve wracking. As they announced the overall placements, I was getting so nervous. Eventually, my number was called for 3rd place, and I couldn't have been happier. I cried in my hotel room because I was just so proud of myself. Like I said, awards are not the reason I dance, and they really don’t mean much - but in times where you do get that recognition, it feels so good. That competition was hard. I walked out of it with a proud heart, and happy soul.

I hope that explained a bit about the process behind creating and performing a solo! I am so excited to do my solo again at the next (and last) competition/convention. The link above is my solo at 24/Seven - I hope you enjoy it!

Thank you for reading, and thank you for your love and support always! :)