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Zack Moy
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Prose1 min read

Tonight, I went to the NYC Ballet. Aaron Copland music played backdrop to a colorful and rapid succession of dance "episodes" — a self-proclaimed binge-watch of ballet.

It is jarring to see ballet for the first time in a decade. It is equally jarring to be uncomfortable in that first moment a dancer takes leap, and you realize you often don't slow down at the pace of classical dance and music.

I am far too accustomed to 22 minute episodes. 2 minute and 30 second songs. 9 second TikToks. 3 second headline skims.

By the 4th "episode" of the performance, I was hooked. My heart rate slowed, and time seemed to slow down. It was exactly what I needed in the moment, and what we could all use some more of.

Adagio can mean two things:

  1. a specific kind of slow tempo in music, or
  2. a ballet duet by a man and woman (or a mixed trio).

I grew up learning and knowing the first. Adagios were often my favorite movements in band & orchestra. They were also the hardest for a French Horn player. But today for the first time, I knew the second.

Perhaps it was the speed of the previous week. Or the speed of our lifestyles. Or the context and color of the choreography. The "Beef: It's what's for dinner" soundtrack. "Fanfare for the Common Man" as the overture. "Billy the Kid" for a noisy stampede.

Today I felt adagio in all ways. I'll be revisiting soon.

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