Thursday, February 22, 2018

Grandmas on Stage/ Grandkids in the Audience - A Guest Blog by Mimi Katz

Dance -
1. To move one's feet or body, or both, rhythmically in a pattern of steps,
especially to the accompaniment of music
My girls with their performing grandmother
2. To leap, skip, etc., as from excitement or emotion; move nimbly or quickly
What does it mean to dance? The definition in the dictionary is pretty straightforward and clear. But the dancing my girls and I watched this week had so much depth than that.

Auntie Bati, Grandma, Auntie Nava

I took my ten-year-old and six-year-old daughters to watch their aunts and grandmother dance in a very special performance entitled, "Dames of the Dance", an all-female dance performance for women of all ages. We look forward to this show all year, with its bright colors, creative dances and shining costumes.
The day itself was full of excitement. "Today we are going to see Grandma's show."
Grandma tap dances (at right) with Auntie Bati right in the center
The girls must have asked me twenty times what time we'd be going and in how much time is that. We headed out. My older daughter was worried every time we slowed down for the slightest bit of traffic and the eta on the Waze changed even by a minute. As we got closer to the theater we stopped to buy some snacks, the anticipation barely allowed the girls to eat dinner before we left.
Grandma plays a grandma
We arrived at the theater and immediately looked for our family. My daughters were so happy, we arrived early. They couldn't wait to see their cousins, aunts and grandmothers. We got our tickets and found our seats. Our family had an entire row. Even their great-grandmothers came to see the performance.
This year's show surpassed well beyond all of our expectations - and we have high expectations based on the previous years we've attended "Dames".
The theme of the show this year is legacy. It's "Dames" tenth anniversary - with 100 women volunteering to dance, rehearsing for months, devoting their efforts to a cause. Their goal is to raise money for the needy in their communities. This year they set an additional goal - to contribute to an IDF Lone Soldiers’ Home in Gush Etzion.
Ten years of shows, of creating a group that has become like family. They wish to extend their love to soldiers who don’t have family with them in Israel. Their message is clear - we love you! You do have family in Israel - we are here for you!
My daughters sat in awe watching their grandmother perform with love. She is able to combine the things she cherishes most - charity work, family and friends, and dancing. This is the legacy.
So what does dance mean? Well, to us it represents beauty and expression, awareness and activeness, facilitating change and providing help, movement and progress and most of all love and unity.

"Dames of the Dance" has one more performance, a 5 PM matinee on Monday February 26, geared for the younger crowd. The sports hall of Efrat will be filled with cheering kids in the stands and shuffling mothers, sisters and grandmothers on stage.
[If you're in Greater Jerusalem, tickets:]

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