I advocate love and kindness in all things. I believe in being supportive to my friends and my fellow dancers. I’m truly a nice person. However….
There are those times when I see something or experience something that really pushes me over the edge and I just have to vent.
Cattitude is what I call having a catty attitude. I think we all have occasional catty moments, but it’s how we handle them that makes a huge difference.
If I’m having an overwhelming and catty moment, I just have to vent. Now there are good ways to vent and there are bad ways to vent.
Believe it or not, I’ve seen two different event sponsors vent on the microphone in front of an audience. One was upset about a no-show performer and the other practically called an audience member a pedophile because he broke the rules and video-taped dancers including a teenager.
I’ve also heard dancers smack-talking in the audience, in dressing rooms and bathrooms about other dancers.
Personally, I have my catty moments in private. I have a couple of good friends I can vent with when I have that overwhelming urge. When my friend Jasel and I attend an event, we hold in anything less-than-positiveuntil we are back in the privacy of our hotel room and then we talk.
So, what kind of things bring on our cattitude? There was that dancer that wore a costume that was so inappropriate, we just had to look away. Who was her teacher? Where was her mother? Why didn’t someone tell her that crack kills?
Then there was the troupe who danced to a sacred prayer song, and the troupe who said their dance was traditional Persian and then did splits and other inappropriate movements.
As we talk to each other about these kinds of things, it’s really more than being catty. It’s also about problem solving. For instance, the costuming issues we observed helped us develop a policy about costuming. If someone is performing at one of our events and they have an inappropriate costume or a costuming mishap, we turn off the music and motion for them to leave the stage. We announce that we are having technical difficulties with their music so that they aren’t embarrassed.
As for the troupe examples, these type of things motivate us to be the best we can be by researching and never claiming to be traditional anything.
Our cattitude is never mean-spirited and is often productive. It has also inspired articles, blogs and made us better teachers as we learn from things we have observed and experienced.