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  1. #1
    Member gwinity's Avatar
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    Default Performing in extreme weather

    I was wondering how you ladies (and gents) feel about performing in extreme temperatures, or in un-airconditioned venues. Do you dance in the heat or in fierce cold? Or does it not bother you?

    It's been scorchingly hot here of late (yesterday was around 43C/110F), bone-dry, and the venue we were performing in was not airconditioned. Despite countless bottles of water, and trying to keep cool backstage, I don't feel any of us did our best, and I know I royally stuffed up. It was too hot to concentrate on what we were doing.

    Has anyone else been in a similar situation, or have any tips for keeping one's cool while dancing in the extremes? What about in the extreme cold?

  2. #2
    Premium Member Aniseteph's Avatar
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    I did go to a workshop in the summer when we were having a heatwave, and no airconditioning in the studio. We all pretended we were in Cairo

    What about some nice and easy laid-back emergency routines for hot weather? Or a couple of those huge electric fans to provide a bit of desert breeze through your veils? For the cold, bouncy energetic routines with lots of big shimmies (and sequinned thermal underwear of course ).

  3. #3
    Senior Member Mouse's Avatar
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    Being in Perth (Australia) we get some nasty hot weather in summer. I haven't ever missed a class due to weather, but a lot of people avoid class in the heat. Luckily we have airconditioning at our current venue, but the last one didn't and it was like a sauna. A slower paced class is the way to go in extreme heat IMO. I much prefer to dance in the cold than the heat.. its always much easier to get warm than cool

  4. #4
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    Default Cold Weather Performance

    Having danced in both Alaska and North Dakota I have a lot more experience with cold weather performance than hot. Our practice studio in Alaska was an old heavy exupment garage with cement floors and walls (except for the one wall that was a huge garage door). Needless to say if it's -20 or colder outside it's going to be a little chilly inside. If we were doing a dress rehersal and you had metal jewelry you would have to put it on at home 'cuz if you just threw it in the car it would be freezing before you got to the studio.

    I know I mentioned flanel lined harem pants in a prevous thread but I really wasn't kidding. We did perform outside in the winter some (only in the above 0 temps) and you do warm up eventually but the total performance has to be a lot shorter than something in the summer because when it's that cold and you're using that much energy hypothermia is something you have to watch out for.

    Now that I'm in Georgia temporarily, I'm discovering that I'd much rather have the cold than the heat. You warm up in cold weather but in hot weather you just get hotter

  5. #5
    Member Viv's Avatar
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    115 is a nice summer day around here so I'm way used to dancing in the heat. We cope by having hand held feather fans for when we are "background" instead of center stage, a frozen bottle of water in the car for immediately after the show (they melt to be icey cold water while your dancing), cotton headbands under headdresses/headbands that have been wet down with cool water or refrigerated for a bit, ice cubes tucked up in the back layers of a turban wrap, and my favorite drinking a gatoraide while I'm getting ready for a show so I can stay hydrated during the show. We also all have water bottle covers to use so we can have small water bottles on stage with us. We keep them to the back with veils, zills and other props and just kneel down and turn away from the audience to grab a quick drink when we aren't dancing. I've found if I can keep hydrated, I don't overheat anywhere near as much during a show no matter what the temp is.
    Hope that helps!

  6. #6
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    Ive performed a lot this heat summer, I always took a menthol before getting on stage, its keeps you cool for 3 minutes

  7. #7
    V.I.P. da Sage's Avatar
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    What Viv says about the frozen bottle of water is the same trick I use for walking in summer heat. You just refill a standard Coke or water bottle 4/5 full of water, freeze it overnight, and then slip it in the front pocket of your pants. The cold bottle cools your body (it sits on the fleshy part of your thigh, so it's fairly comfortable). Your body and the air both warm the ice enought to melt it, so you get cool water to sip.

  8. #8
    Member gwinity's Avatar
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    Thanks for the tips (and phtbhtbthtbht to Viv for being so blase about such hot weather!) Mouse, I haven't missed a class due to weather either, but if I'd have known I was going to be so affected by the heat (dizzy, loss of concentration, limbs not working properly), I might've been tempted to drop out of the performance and been murdered by my teacher afterwards. As it was, I could only do one of the pieces we'd been booked for.

    Aniseteph, sadly it was all choreographed to specific music, and as we're a student troupe changing at the last minute would have equalled disaster!

    The ice cubes in the turban sound like a good idea. We all had chilled water bottles in the dressing room, but couldn't bring anything on stage, for obvious reasons. Do you use energy drinks/gatorade/similar instead of water to keep from losing whatever minerals the body loses when you perspire?

    Joy, I hadn't thought about the shorter performances and hypothermia in the extreme cold. Apart from keeping it short, how did you cope?

  9. #9
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    For hot weather, you could also try something nice and damp inside your top as it helps keep you cool. If you are able to, some sort of cloth choker with lots of something that can be kept damp round the neck, damp headbands for the back of the neck.
    For cold weather, i've done long johns under something with a gawazhee coat to try to stay warm.....LOL.
    Either way you adjust and do what you need to do.

  10. #10
    Member Viv's Avatar
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    (and phtbhtbthtbht to Viv for being so blase about such hot weather!)
    LOL!!!! Just call me a desert rat. I don't get warm until its over 100 degrees out. I don't count our normal summer temps of 112 to 117 as hot. Now when we hit 120 out, its hot

    I highly, highly recomend drinking something like a gatoraide before a show on a hot day. I find it helps a lot.

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