Dancing Through It: Review

Thanks to Family Christian for a review copy of this book, and for the giveaway certificate.
Dancing Through It

As a child, I was a dancing wanna-be. I so clearly remember standing beside the rickety stage at Oktoberfest, gazing longingly as the Dixon Dance Studio kids filed onstage in their glittery costumes. At recess, I’d do made-up dance steps, once prompting a recess teacher to ask, “Are you in dance?” Embarrassed, I shook my head. Then who could forget the highlight of Saturday night’s Lawrence Welk Show — it was, of course, the dancers Bobby and Cissy.

As an adult, some of my favorite times were spent in the studios of our local ballet school, where I didn’t dance, but played lovely music as I watched others leaping and gracefully moving across the rooms. To this day, not a Christmas goes by that doesn’t see me in the audience for “The Nutcracker.”

Jenifer Ringer: Dancing Through It

So I was a natural to read “Dancing Through It: My Journey in the Ballet” by New York City Ballet dancer Jenifer Ringer.

Dancing Through It Ringer

But I didn’t anticipate how much I’d enjoy the book. Jenifer (yes, it’s an odd spelling, and yes, you’ll understand it after reading the book) takes you along on her life journey, from childhood through her teen years and right up to the present.

I was struck by how much of a kindred spirit she seemed to be: we’re both introverts, and I understood fully what she meant when she told her husband, “Being with you is even better than being alone!” (he took this as a bit of an insult and just didn’t get it). I related too to all the angst of her early 20s that she described so well: it took me back to that time in my own life, when we seem to feel and experience things in a greater way than we do later. I could feel her excitement and happiness as she met and dated her future husband, James. I understood her confusion as she struggled to keep her job (ballet) and her diet all in their proper places. I related to her “good girl” status and her desire to do everything well.

Dancing Through It Ringer

A Christian Artist

Most of all, I appreciated her Christian witness in the book, and can imagine that it would be really difficult to live as a Christian in the highest echelons of the arts world — a notoriously godless place (I remember, years back, reading a memoir by an oboist in a famous orchestra. I was shocked by the lawless and godless behavior described as normal life for artists).

I just loved this book. You can buy it at Family Christian for $18. I think it would make a wonderful gift for anyone who enjoys the arts, or may be as a birthday or graduation gift for a girl who dances.

Family Christian is offering a $10 appreciation certificate (basically a gift certificate) to one of you. You can use it to buy this book, or for anything else in their stores, either online or brick-and-mortar.

Use the Gleam form below to enter by March 21, I’ll choose a random winner March 22.

$10 Family Christian appreciation certificate

23 thoughts on “Dancing Through It: Review

  1. This book review is most interesting! After seeing my granddaughter perform in Nutcracker each December for the 10 years that she was in ballet, it sounds very daunting to make a professional career of it.

  2. I so admire dancers. I have no physical grace at all (PE classes were my Valley of Humiliation in school), so I love to see it in others. I imagine it would be hard to live for God in the art world.

  3. I truly enjoyed your review of this book. BTW, I think the cards are stacked against one in your contests if one doesn’t tweet or use Pinterest.

  4. I liked your review of this book. As a mommy of four and a teacher, I don’t find much time to read but it’s certainly on my to do list 🙂

  5. At Holland School we had one teacher who loved to dance. His name was Mr. Katter. I don’t think his wife cared a thing about dancing. He would dance with me, though I didn’t know how. He’d say, “Schulte, you could be quite a good dancer!” Seems like we used to hold dances in the upper floor of our “new” gym. This was in the 1950s. Those were the days!

  6. Not much of a dancer myself, but my daughter is. Would love to read this!

  7. I tap danced when I was young, but haven’t done it in years!

  8. I have never danced. I have cerebral palsy so I’m not very graceful. I’m really a klutz. Thant’s how I broke my arm/wrist a few weeks ago. Sigh. kristiedonelson(at)gmail(dot)com Thank you.

  9. I have not danced. Dancing was not appropriate in our household when I was a child.

  10. Sounds like a good read. I used to dance in school and loved every minute of it but threw it all away hanging with the wrong crowd. Then I tried going back as a young adult and soon realized my skill level no longer matched everyone else in my age group, so sadly I quit. To this day I still have a beautiful connection with music but instead of just shaking my rump I use it to glorify and worship God. Thanks for sharing. 🙂

  11. I am not a dancer but find the world of ballet fascinating.

  12. I used to take dance lessons but my lack of rhythm rendered it quite useless! Wish I had dancing talent 🙂

  13. I am not a dancer, but our older girls would like this.

  14. My daughter would enjoy this book. She takes dance classes, but I hope that she does not want to pursue a career in it.

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