I am no stranger to working from home. I completed the bulk of my master’s degree remotely and I have had my own online businesses and blogging endeavors on and off for a few years. That being said, this whole situation is allowing me to reflect and focus on my own plans.
The original goal of this blog was to combine my love of data and dance, and to use that passion to improve the dance industry. I had already been talking with a few of my local studios about their online presence and digital teaching goals. For the most part, the response was positive but hesitant. Often, there are more questions than answers, since each studio has its own unique culture and client base. Now that we are in a moment of clear social distancing, physical studios feel they have no other option but to go digital.
As many studios and instructors are likely realizing, digital stuff isn’t too hard to get started, but it is easy to get overwhelmed with the planning and management. It’s like owning two studios, and the same things don’t always work in both environments.
Throughout my anthropological career, I have studied the interplay of intangible and physical experiences. An archaeology site feels much different when you take yourself to the physical place, versus looking at a museum collection online. Digitization changes how we can produce and consume our experiences, and this comes with new values and new challenges. My goal now is to use my background in applied anthropology to collect and share data that will help to improve our transitions into digital dance.
I believe this move toward more digitization will improve the overall culture of the dance industry, but we must be reflexive and mindful of how we do it. With a focus on feedback and reflexivity in the dance industry, I am optimistic that we will be able to create better online experiences for dancers all over the world.