Last summer I taught a series of workshops for dance educators at Rhee Gold’s DanceLife Teacher Conference. I walked into the room and said this:
“Everything in tap dance land is about people.”
It was the first time I used that line in that way. It resonated, and I’ve been using it ever since.
There is so much happening these days in terms of the pursuit of virtuosity in the arts. The technical demands and proficiencies are astounding. There’s also a lot of consumerism happening – art pieces born of love become things that are bought, sold, and traded.
In such fields it might be a good reminder that the arts are fundamentally about people (not commerce). The industrial mindset might obscure or distort this fact, saying, “Artists have to produce something of (market) value to be valuable.” But who really knows when an artist’s voice will be needed? And who really knows which artist’s voice will need to be heard?
If you are an artist (and who isn’t?), please please please cultivate your voice. You’re the only one that has it. You will need it. People will need it. And everything is about people.