When I was little, I wanted to be a Radio City Hall Rockette. Other girls I knew wanted to be dolphin trainers or school teachers or astronauts, but I was more interested in being on a stage, in a shiny costume, kicking sky-high in ridiculous silver pumps.
My mother would take us to New York City to see the Christmas Spectacular every year. We’d sit in the nosebleed section, leaning in toward the stage, squinting to watch the Rockettes “collapse” on each other during a perfectly choreographed wooden soldier scene. We’d gasp at the perfect precision of their tap dancing routines, as they scattered around in red and white Santa suits. And then there was the kickline. Oh, the kickline. My sister and I would go home, and immediately start practicing our own kickline: arms around waists, bumbling around, trying to get our feet in unison.
My mother signed us up for dance classes. However, after eight years of tap classes, I realized I was never going to be a Rockette. I wasn’t even going to be a soloist in my tiny studio dance recital. Heck, I wasn’t even going to be in the front row of my class.
But to this day, I’m still enamored by the Rockettes. When they make an occasional holiday television appearance, I’ll still drop everything to watch that kickline. And I’d be lying to say that I still don’t try to perfect that kick at home. And, five, six, seven, eight, KICK!