Water dances

Dancer: Ulyana

Dance Location: Universal Hall, Findhorn

This is a dance that... feels like a river flowing.

It happened ten years ago. I was in Universal Hall and there was a man there, playing his piano, and he asked if I would like to dance while he played, and I said yes. We did one rehearsal and then performed it for an audience. I remember that sense of excitement. I’d never danced in public before, so it was quite an interesting experience. The first time I performed it, I felt very exposed. I realised that in this moment I was showing myself fully. It is like being naked. From the outside you maybe could not tell, but on the inside I was frozen.

I was 37 at the time and I had been dancing since in my 20s, but this particular dance taught me a lot about listening to my body and staying connected to it while I move. It taught me how to be a performer. Since that experience I feel unafraid to be on stage. Instead, I look forward to it because I know it will bring me to a place of celebration. It is so momentary – right here, right now. A few minutes and it is gone. I enjoy the intensity of being so present.

The dance is a solo. The audience are seated, and I come in as the music starts to play. The dance is not always the same. Every time there is something a little different. It depends on where the music takes me and how I feel when I perform it on the day.

The music is lyrical and flowing. It’s hard to describe the movement. It is like water flows and I imitate it. It is the particular taste of frozen water or when the snow is melting – the taste when spring is coming. My dress is blue and green with a little bit of violet. This also represents the colours of nature.

I use the whole space. It feels like freedom.

It ends with stillness.