As a professional ballet dancer, Jennifer Cafarella knows all about balance. Each day, she balances motherhood and her roles as the director of Ballet Theatre of Phoenix and the artistic director of the nonprofit Convergence Ballet Company. She formed Convergence Ballet Company when she couldn’t find exactly what she wanted to do in the dance world. The company is currently practicing for their August show.
The alarm goes off and I jump into the shower to get a head start before the children’s alarms go off at 7 a.m. I pin my hair back securely to keep it off my face and neck for the full day. Breakfast is always scrambled eggs and coffee that I simultaneously prepare while I throw sandwiches and yogurts into lunch boxes. I make sure everyone has their dance bags and any permission slips all signed before we head out the door for their summer activities of musical theater and rock climbing day camps.
I cherish the drive to their summer camps because they always have news to tell me and songs to sing on the radio to.
I arrive at Ballet Theatre of Phoenix and take advantage of the quiet building to answer emails and voicemail from company members and parents of ballet students. We have constant inquiries about our children’s ballet classes and, as a mother, I like to take my time answering all their questions about what it means to enroll their child, the commitment level and the discipline it takes to juggle school and ballet classes.
We [Ballet Theatre of Phoenix] offer a wide range of adult open ballet classes and I have an outstanding staff that coaches the dancers. I take ballet classes next to the students to keep my technique honed and in shape for Convergence Ballet performances.
I take ballet classes next to the students to keep my technique honed and in shape for Convergence Ballet performances.
I eat a protein packed lunch typically of quinoa, chicken and spinach. I try to pack my lunch every day, but I also love hopping over to the salad bar at Whole Foods.
As Artistic Director, I rehearse Convergence Ballet dancers for any upcoming performances we have. I also coordinate costuming, photo shoots, and performance schedules during this time.
This is the hour I schedule meetings. This can range from meeting with the Convergence Ballet Board, theater and production staff, potential donors or Ballet Theatre of Phoenix faculty.
Ballet students arrive and classes begin. After school students ranging from ages 3 to 18 come flooding in for their ballet lessons and back to back classes keep our schedules busy and the studios full.
I arrive home for dinner that was prepared by my wonderful boyfriend and, if any homework needs assistance, I jump in. Typically it’s the time I bond again with the children and hear about their day.
The children are in bed and it’s time to connect with my boyfriend. We discuss our days, and what the after school activities for the next day are to coordinate driving the children around. We love to find a television show to watch together and try to find a way to make each other laugh. Sometimes we just high-five the fact that no one cried or got left somewhere. He always makes sure I stretch and roll out my muscles on my foam roller before heading to bed. Apparently I kick a lot in my sleep if I don’t relax them.
11:30pm Lights out!