Folyosó Autumn 2022 - Page 4

Being a Dancer

Helka Ondok

No one mentions how hard it is to be a dancer.

The pointe shoes break your feet, the tight bun messes up your hair. You are never slim enough, you are never good enough.

Your coach is never satisfied, even if every little part of your body hurts at the end of the day.

The constant need for approval, the stress for validation that will never come.

– Stand up straighter!

– Have you learned nothing?

– You are too slow.

– Do it again until you can do it right.

You are expected to leave your tears and your pain when you go up on the stage.

You sit in front of your mirror, crying because you don’t think you will ever be good enough.

But, when it is time to perform, and you can hear the click of the speaker, for a moment it is all worth it.

Because you move your body with the flow of the music, and your head clears.

When you hear the sweet melodies of a song you heard many times before, all your thoughts disappear.

And for a moment, I swear you get lost in the dance, the movements you’ve done plenty of times before, and you will do them again and again until they are perfect.

Being a dancer is hard. But it is all worth it, because when the music starts playing, none of your problems matter.

Can You Draw Faster, Picasso?

Lilla Kassai

“Good morning, class!”

“Good morning, Mrs. Calloway!”  The art students greeted the teacher with a tired and bored groan. It was their last lesson, and it was  Friday.

“So today, you are going to make sketches and studies of the music students. They will be posing as if they were playing their instruments.“

Most of the students rolled their eyes, but a few of them seemed to be interested. It was a rare opportunity to draw models in these special positions.

Mike really looked forward to this task. He was very passionate about drawing and fine arts, so he quickly became enthusiastic. He sat down in front of a girl who was gazing at the piano while gently moving her fingers on the keys.

“Hey!“ he greeted the girl awkwardly “So… Do you mind me drawing you? Especially your hands…” he added, staring at the girl’s snow-white hands and long, slim fingers.

“Ehm…Okay,“ she answered, a bit confused. “How should I pose, then?” she asked in a soft tone, blinking innocently at Mike with her big brown eyes behind her glasses.

The boy lost connection to reality for a few seconds. He peered at the girl’s face, carefully examining every curve.

“So… why don’t you place your hand like this?” he stuttered while trying to place the girl’s fingers on the piano keys.

 “Because if I hit the keys, it would sound awful,”  she giggled, then moved her hands into another position, then pressed the keys of the F major chord. Mike immediately felt a light pressure in his chest from this small scenario.

 “Young man, it would be a pleasure if you would start working instead of eyeballing with your model,” Mrs. Calloway snapped at Mike in a bored and sarcastic tone, then continued to walk in between the desks and give explanatory speeches on sketching human bodies. Meanwhile, Mike’s face started to turn bright red even from looking at the pianist girl, who seemed to be getting bored and started to play Für Elise quietly.

 “Ehm.. would you remain in this position?“ he murmured, looking like a mellow tomato.

“Okay,” she said and froze. “Am I sitting correctly?”

“Yeeess,” squeaked Mike, then he started to sketch. Even if his model was trying her best to remain motionless, he still had difficulties focusing on his task, so it happened quite frequently that he caught himself gazing at her. Therefore, he wasn’t really fast at completing his sketch, while the girl was trying her best to sit motionless. It might be thought that modelling for artists is easy, but that wasn’t the case. She could hardly resist the urge to run her fingers through the keys. Moreover, her back and her neck were getting sore from sitting in the same position for half an hour. Her fingers started to cramp from holding them tightly above the piano. After another thirty minutes, she tried to loosen up a bit and stretch her sore limbs.

“Don’t move!” Mike snapped.

“But my fingers are sore,” the girl groaned, trying to peer into Mike’s sketches. When she saw that there were barely any lines and only a few simple shapes on the paper, she was about to freak out.

“Man, what have you done in the past hour?” she burst out in anger, after throwing a glimpse at the other student’s studies of their models.

“I told you not to move.” Mike’s sky-blue eyes flashed in a mixture of panic and anger. When the girl yelled at him, he got scared and accidentally drew a thick black line across the paper that interfered with the sketch of the piano “Now you won’t sit in the same position again. How the hell will I be able to draw studies of you like this?” he shouted.

“I don’t know, you should have made up your mind an hour ago!”  the girl grumbled in displeasure. Then she sat back in the same position, after receiving a dirty look from Mrs. Calloway.

“Tilt your head a bit more downwards,” Mike pouted, and positioned the girl’s head and finger to the starting pose.

“Fine…” she murmured annoyedly and tried to remain in the position for another hour.

Eventually the girl lost control over her fingers and started to play Für Elise again.

“He isn’t even drawing. He is so slow, I don’t think he made any progress in the past hour either” she was saying to herself, when Mike yelled at her unexpectedly:


“First of all,” she snapped, “I played Beethoven. Secondly, my limbs are experiencing cramps and my fingers hurt. Can you draw faster, Picasso?”

 Mike was about to say something back, when he saw Mrs. Calloway staring at him, looking like she was about to throw both him and the girl out the window. He completed his task quietly, then secretly took a photo of the girl in the modelling position.

When the bell rang, the models could finally relax.

“So how did you manage, Picasso?” the pianist girl thrusted, walking up to Mike’s desk to check out what he had drawn. When she saw his picture, her jaw dropped.  The sketch looked very similar to reality: anyone could tell right away that she was the one Mike had drawn.

“Wow,” she gasped. “Perhaps, I underestimated you…Picasso,” she added with a soft, shy giggle.

“You sure did.” Mike grinned at her, his anger gone. “Mozart,” he added.

“I told you, I was playing Beethoven, silly!” The girl rolled her eyes, then started to pack her stuff.

“It’s all the same to me.” Mike shrugged his shoulders and gave his drawing to Mrs. Calloway. Then he looked back at the girl.

“You play beautifully, you know,” he complimented awkwardly, while his face slowly turned red.

“Thank you.” The girl smiled, blushing. “Anyway, I gotta go practice. Catch me later!” She waved goodbye, smiling.

Mike remained standing still, his face red. Even if he was annoyed by this girl while making a portrait of her, he couldn’t stay mad at her or get her out of his mind. On his way home, he plugged his headphones into his phone, let the music play into his ears, and murmured the lyrics, a soft smile slowly growing on his face:

“I’ll cross the world for green and gold
But it’s those Spanish eyes
That get me home… home again.”

(Quote: U2: Spanish Eyes)

The Peak of Intelligence

Zsófia Szabina Gávris

Poem by Zsófia Szabina Gávris. Credit to Eszter Klára Szabó for technical assistance.