2 3 4 5 Ballet Webb

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Wacky Wednesday Hip Bungi


Wacky Wednesday Hip Bungi

A common problem during rond de jambes at the barre is the fact that the supporting hip wants to move with the rond de jambe, instead of applying resistance to it. This mistake allows the entire pelvis to move and makes it appear that the dancer is doing the hula instead of a classical rond de jambe.

To keep from doing the hula at the barre, imagine a bungi cord attached to the supporting hip. This cord runs from the hip to the wall and is tight enough to provide a counter-pull during each rond de jambe.

Now the hips will remain calm and squarely to the front!

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets
Secret #22g:
“Imagine a bungi cord tying your supporting hip to the wall during rond de jambes.”

Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“You do not write your life with words...You write it with actions. What you think is not important. It is only important what you do.”
Patrick Ness, A Monster Calls

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Monday, September 18, 2017

Hurricane Recovery

Hurricane Recovery


Due to damage from Hurricane Irma, I still have no internet service. I will begin blogging again when it is restored.


Other than that, everything is good news. My family is fine and my house came through the storm without damage (all the downed tree limbs missed the house), and the electricity is on!



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Monday, September 11, 2017

Monday Hurricane


Monday Hurricane

Due to Hurricane Irma, I will not be posting a new blog for the next few days. I am safe, but wind and rain will probably cause us to lose power.

I’ll be back later in the week.

Everyone in the path of the storm, stay safe!



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My latest books are coloring books! They are available on Amazon.

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Sunday, September 10, 2017

Sunday Mysterious


Sunday Mysterious

Those of you who have read my books, even my non-fiction ones, know that I am fascinated by the mysterious, the odd, the unique, and the unexplained. I don’t think I’m alone in this.

The word “mysterious”, according to the Merriam-Webster Dictionary means:  “exciting wonder, curiosity, or surprise while baffling efforts to comprehend or identify”.  It is the “exciting wonder” part that of that definition that I especially love. Truth, I have found, truly can be stranger than fiction.

 Be on the lookout for those things in life excite wonder – it is highly inspirational. And these kinds of things can be hidden in everyday events, sometimes called coincidences.

Mysterious things are everywhere, but usually you have to look for them.

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets
Motivational Secret #182:
“Be on the lookout for real-life instances of the mysterious.”

Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“It’s the unknown that draws people.”
E.A. Bucchianeri, Brushstrokes of a Gadfly

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Saturday, September 9, 2017

Saturday Old Things Statute


Saturday Old Things Statute

It is easy to become complacent about steps, dance styles and choreography that you have done thousands of times before. This is when your dancing life is at risk of becoming stale, and inspiration dries up. It helps to remember Ballet Statute #91: Think about old things in new ways.”

Teachers and Directors can help a lot with this, but it is up to each individual dancer to help themselves, too. Read ballet books and blogs, take class from someone new – or take an entirely different class like jazz or African if you never have before. Take an art class! Seek out new things and new ideas.

In other words, shake things up a bit. Broaden your experience and it will soon be second nature to thing about old things in new ways.

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets
Ballet Statute #91:
Think about old things in new ways.”


Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“If you want something new, you have to stop doing something old”
Peter F. Drucker

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Friday, September 8, 2017

Fun Friday Bouncing Ball


Fun Friday Bouncing Ball

You will remember that essential idea for jumps, Ballet Secret #15c: To begin a jump, remember the “up to go down to go up". This secret is perfect for a prop (see the Link of the Day).

Start with a good, bouncy ball (or balls). Drop it, or have a student drop it by just letting it go from their hand. Tell them to notice how high it bounces. Then have them drop it from a higher point and notice how much higher it bounces.

Let the students experiment with different heights, and using more or less force. They’ll see immediately how to improve their jumps.

There it is, visually represented: the up to go down to go up.

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets
Secret #20q:
“Bounce a ball two different ways to illustrate ‘the up to go down to go up’.”

Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“There are no disasters, only opportunities.”
Boris Johnson

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Thursday, September 7, 2017

Throwback Thursday Shimmy


Throwback Thursday Shimmy

The beginning of the twentieth century saw the emergence of a new dance that involved an energetic shaking of the body – it was soon called “the Shimmy”.

According to the Oxford English Dictionary, the first record of it was in 1917 as the shimme-sha-wabble. It is next found in the 1918 edition of the British Dancing Times, which described it as “a very, very crude” dance.”

The dance’s shaking and twitching movements were deemed so suggestive, that the shimmy was banned in many cities, including New York and Chicago (see Link of the Day).

In Atlanta, the Alamo Theater used a cutout display of Viola Dana with a mechanism that allowed movements like the shimmy for the film The Chorus Girl's Romance  (see above photo). The chief of police ordered the mechanism turned off.

Why was it called the Shimmy? Opinions vary. The word itself is often considered to be a US variant of chemise, an undergarment. Further back, in Old English, a chemise is a type of undershirt, used for warm and to absorb perspiration. But the dance’s quivering movements probably also made people think of light shimmering, or things shaking, thus the name.

In the early 1960s, a few hit songs featured the Shimmy, including Bobby Freeman's "Shimmy, Shimmy," the Olympics' "Shimmy Like Kate", and Little Anthony & the Imperials' "Shimmy Shimmy Ko-ko Bop."

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets
Dance History Factoid #181:
“The origin of the shimmy dance is debated.”

Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“Do a loony-goony dance
'Cross the kitchen floor,
Put something silly in the world
That ain't been there before.”
Shel Silverstein, A Light in the Attic

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My latest books are coloring books! They are available on Amazon.

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