Dancers in the Park (2007) Pt. 2

Dusk Dances Celebrates 20 Years



This week’s diarist is actor and dancer Michael Greyeyes. He kept his diary last week while rehearsing for Dusk Dances, a dance festival that takes place in Toronto’s Withrow Park today to Sunday.



It’s raining.

Mad scramble to call Sylvie Bouchard, artistic director of Dusk Dances, to reschedule a crucial first showing of our piece–a natural consequence of running an outdoor festival. Then quick calls to my fellow performers, Eddy and Meegwun, telling them I’ve cancelled today’s rehearsal.


I need all the rehearsal time I can get, but it’s not worth rehearsing in a dance studio. The dance work belongs outside and rehearsing it at the actual location is the only way to work the piece at this point. Yesterday was killer. The guys looked weary by the end of the night, and on the drive home on the Don Valley Parkway (thankfully un-jammed), it felt like both of my eyes were in one socket.

Today is about balance.

Work/family. Like many businessmen, I’ve been guilty this past year of letting work outweigh my family. A commonplace occurrence, I know. But this year, I’m determined to stay in balance. Cancelled rehearsal = unexpected slot of available time for my daughters. Took them to swimming class, made lunch, played Operation. Put the little one to nap. Idyllic moments … but business rears its ugly head – checking e-mails, stealing a glance at the video we made of yesterday’s changes.

Hustle. Don’t slow down. As an artist, I’ve learned how to hustle. It is the first box that needs to be checked on the job application:

For fun I like to:

a) Relax and watch a movie.

b) Read a book.

c) Play a sport.

d) Stay up till 4 a.m. filling out a grant application.

If you checked d), consider a life in the arts.

FYI, if you checked d), also make sure you marry a saint (or another artist), or a civilian–as we in the biz often say; they’ll keep you in balance.


Tomorrow, why dancers are like MacGyver.


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