The Extraordinary Journey of a Trainee Hen Party Instructor – Part 1
My name is Niamh and I am the first trainee who has been inducted into my role as a Hen Party Instructor, within the House Of Trixie Blue. Eeeeekkkk
I have created a small number of blogs to record my journey throughout this process which acts as nice memory for myself to see how much I have developed myself throughout this journey but also if any of you were ever thinking ‘You know what, they always seem to be having so much fun over at HoTB and I wanna piece of the action. How on earth can I get involved? because I would to spend my weekends creating hilarious memories for a bunch of hen’s?” Well then grab a cuppa and a packet of shortbread and cast your eye’s below for more info.
My first ever experience within the House of Trixie Blue Hen Party Training Academy was on 20th jan 2018 and it had been a little while since my original interview/audition so this was my first time in the studio having some 1:1 tutorial time. I remember feeling very apprehensive as it was 1:1, something very much out of my comfort zone but something I was equally very passionate and interested in…….Soooo essentially I was a big bag of nervous, excited energy all rolled up in to one 5ft 3 package!.
On the day I met Kristi outside the studio and although I’ve known her for a few years through many burlesque choreography and performance courses we had a little catch up, prior to getting on with our task for the day. I knew a little bit about what I could expect as I am always kept up to date with with emails etc, so I arrived open minded and apprehensive, as I was nervous I wasn’t going to live her to Kristi’s expectations so I put that extra pressure on myself (which by the way was totally unnecessary as I knew Kristi wasn’t putting that pressure on me) however after a little chat about how the day was going to playout I felt completely at ease and the fiery pits of determination were all revved up and I was raring to go.
Kristi asked if I had ever taught dance before and although I had dance experience I had picked up over the years and I was comfortable with creating choreography, I had never taught this formally to another person or group of individuals. So “Mirroring” as it’s known was going to be the main focus of my next few session and indeed my life!.…for a little while.
Before i begin let me try and explain mirroring – Think of a time you have tried to follow an exercise video, Mr Motivator for example…(is he even still a thing? lets bring him back for today) however, as you stand in your gym gear,in your living room with the cat judging your lycra attire – Mr M faces you from inside your TV screen and when he tells you reach for the stars with your Right hand he will be “mirroring you” but as he’s facing you he would be doing exactly the same thing but reaching for the stars with his left hand. Still with me? It sounds easy in principle right? Imagine trying to do this for a full routine, saying one thing but doing another all whilst giving direction and counting beats to the track……… I know my mind was boggled too, but this is where we started our journey.
Phew this was hard work In theory my brain knew what it needed to do but my logical side of my brain would.not.let.it.happen. So as with everything in life i needed to break this down and let my little brain work in manageable chunks, so we created a small amount of Choreography around 2/3 counts of 8 to Beyonce – Single Ladies. We had a general chat and discussed ways in which I would usually create my choreography, by using iconic moves I may use this as skeleton but we also discussed what triggers give me inspiration and we created some very basic choreography to start with. This part was simple we created a sequence of movement and learnt that no problem, once we had got our heads around that and I was comfortable working in the mirror and directing Kristi along with counting aloud the counts of 8. What was most frustrating to me was that I knew what I wanted to achieve but my body and brain weren’t working as a team to pull this off.
The session was around 2 hours long so now that we had a plan in place it was all about the practice and creating muscle memory for myself. We turned away from the mirror to make this a little easier as it was now time to put everything together; the choreo, the direction and the counting and now to learn it backwards…Flipper .. and breath!
I’m quite visual and often use my hands to prompt my left from right (you know the L shape on your left hand) so in order to help me visualise this and call out direction verbally, Kristi gave me a tip to pop a small L on my right hand and an R on my right hand which helped me when I paused and took break I was able to get my head back in the game and persevere.
By the end of the session I was able to remember the original choreography, break it down, mirror it and essentially teach it backwards and I was pretty damn chuffed with myself considering i had never done anything like this before. Although I have danced in the past even way before performing burlesque, I had never taught dance in any capacity and I felt a real sense of accomplishment at the end of the day.
Kristi and I had a debrief at the end of the session and we put a plan in place ahead of the next sesssion – I was to continue creating more choreography for Single Ladies right from the begining to complete the first verse. However me being me, and not one to rest once something has clicked, I did continue to complete the full chorus as well – so my homework was to create the choreo, complete the written direction in note format and also to be able to mirror this choreo and teach this in 4 weeks time.
What a whirl wind of a session and this was only my first session in the HoTB training academy and WHAT AN EXPERIENCE IT WAS!!! it was exciting, it was terrifying and the first of a really really good experience for me. I was extremely excited about what was coming up, what development I had for myself and it really gave a me a new focus and passion that I really desired. Thank you to Kristi at The House of Trixie Blue for investing your time in me and if you are on the edge of your seats and eager to find out what happened in my second session then stay tuned for part two and remember – There ain’t no party like a HOTB Hen Party 😉
Thank you so much Niamh. Such a pleasure to have you a part of House of Trixie Blue’s Hen Party Training Academy.
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Love & Shimmies
House of Trixie Blue
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