2 3 Ballet Webb: July 2014

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Throwback Thursday and the Baby Ballerinas


Throwback Thursday and the Baby Ballerinas

It was dance critic Arnold Haskell who dubbed them “baby ballerinas”.  This was in the 1930s, during the same period that child movie stars enthralled the public.

The three dancers were:  Irina Baronova (age 12), Tatiana Riabouchinska (age 14), and Tamara Toumanova (age 12).  They were discovered by George Balanchine in Paris, having been taken out of Russia by their parents to avoid the Bolsheviks.  Balanchine selected them to star in a new company, the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo.

These “babies” danced almost non-stop and had a schedule that would not be tolerated by today’s standards.  By the time they were in their twenties, they had logged more time onstage then many dancers twice their age.  And a life of one-night stands, traveling by train and eating wherever they could, was hardly a glamorous life.

However, the publicity generated by the baby ballerinas may have helped revive interest in ballet at a time when it appeared to be waning.  A book called Irina:  Ballet, Life and Love written by Irina Baronova, describes her life, love, and adventures as a baby ballerina.

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets:

Dance History Factoid #41:  
“The baby ballerinas were three young dancers with the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo.”

                Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:

“The best kind of friend is the kind you can sit on a
porch swing with, never say a word, and then walk away
feeling like it was the best conversation you've ever had.

-          Unknown


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Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Wondrous Wednesday and Perfect Penchée


Wondrous Wednesday and Perfect Penchée

Yesterday I blogged about the Rule of Penchée, and today I’m going to add another hint.  The usual problem in penchée is one of stability.  This is especially true when the dancer is wearing pointe shoes.

As the dancer establishes the position (usually arabesque, but not always), there needs to be a conscious effort to send energy through the working leg.  This energy is continuous, and it should feel as though it goes outward to infinity.

This is the same energy I’ve talked about before, but it is particularly crucial in a penchée.  With this use of energy, and the Rule of Penchée engaged, it is unlikely that the dancer will be unbalanced and (gasp!) resort to putting her hands on the floor.

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets:

Secret #21c:  
“To help maintain stability in a penchée, think of sending energy outward through the working leg.”

                Link of the Day:


Quote of the Day:
“If you want to find the secrets of the universe, think in terms of energy, frequency and vibration.”
― Nicola Tesla

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Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Terrific Tuesday Penchée


Terrific Tuesday Penchée

A lovely penchée can be performed in many positions, but it is most commonly done in arabesque.  The highly coveted “six o’clock” penchée is exactly what it sounds like:  the legs form a perfect perpendicular line, like a non-digital clock reading six o’clock.”

There are a number of secrets to a successful penchée, but the most important one is Ballet Secret #21b:  “The body is allowed to go down only as much as the working leg goes up”.  It is imperative that this rule be observed, because if the body descends ahead of the leg, the line is ruined, and so is the stability of the position.

Another way to think of it is this:  the relationship (distance) between the dancer’s back and the arabesque leg is constant.  If the body inclines ahead of the leg, this relationship is broken.

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets:

Secret #21b:  
The rule of the penchée:  the body is allowed to go down only as much as the working leg goes up.”

                Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“With the new day comes new strength and new thoughts.”
-          Eleanor Roosevelt

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Monday, July 28, 2014

Marvelous Monday and the Easy Eighth


Marvelous Monday and the Easy Eighth

Stretching is a dancer’s constant companion.  We do it to relax, we do it when we are waiting our turn in rehearsal, and of course we do it to improve our flexibility and extension.

When young dancers first learn to stretch, they are often surprised to learn that it is somewhat less than comfortable for them!   But they quickly learn the benefits.

Some dancers are more naturally flexible than others, but everyone can achieve good extension with time and practice.  I tell my students about the easy eighth:  simply strive to stretch an eighth of an inch further each day, and soon the results will show.  Sometimes I take a ruler and show how much an eighth of an inch is – so small it is achievable every day!

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets:

Secret #16j:  
“Strive to stretch just an eighth of an inch further every day.”

                Link of the Day:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J1vpB6h3ek4

Quote of the Day:
“Success is due to our stretching to the challenges of life. Failure comes when we shrink from them.
-          John C. Maxwell

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Sunday, July 27, 2014

Sunday Memories


Sunday Memories

No matter how close our friends are, there often comes a time when we leave them behind, or they leave us.  Life is like that.  Perhaps they move away, or we do.  And despite our efforts to stay in touch, sometimes the relationship just fades away. 

But one thing that doesn’t fade is memory.  In fact, it often grows deeper with time.  Think of the stories your grandparents tell – they remember vividly their best friend from kindergarten, or their first love, or their favorite teacher.   I’m sure you have wonderful memories of people you no longer see – and probably have less than great memories of some other people.

So think about living your own life in a way that creates good memories for others.

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets:

Motivational Secret #36:  
“Live to be a good memory for others.”

                Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“Sometimes you will never know the true value of a moment until it becomes a memory.”
-          Unknown

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Saturday, July 26, 2014

Saturday Sleight of Hand Saut de Basque


Saturday Sleight of Hand Saut de Basque

Ahhh the saut de basque!   It is a fun big jump involving a turn in the air.  But what makes it the most fun is the sleight of hand (or leg?) that happens when a single saut de basque becomes a double.

The double is actually an illusion!  The single saut de basque itself is really only a half turn in the air because by the time the leading leg grand battement reaches its height, the dancer is already halfway around and the next position in passé completes the full revolution.

A double is achieved the same way – it is actually only one and a half turns.  But it looks like so much more!  So if a dancer has mastered the single saut de basque, the double is usually not a difficult transition.  Just remember to spot twice!

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets:

Secret #15p:  
“A saut de basque is a half turn in the air, so a double is actually less than two revolutions.”

                Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“If something is there, you can only see it with your eyes open, but if it isn't there, you can see it just as well with your eyes closed. That's why imaginary things are often easier to see than real ones.”
Norton Juster, The Phantom Tollbooth

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Friday, July 25, 2014

Fun Friday and Flic-Flacs


Fun Friday and Flic-Flacs

What a unique step is the flic-flac turn!  Also called "petits fouettés en tournant", it is usually introduced at the barre, and often as part of a frappé combination, flic-flacs teach several concepts at once.  One is the double lift so necessary in many steps; another is the critical articulation of the foot against the floor.

I have often used the image of marbles to explain how the metatarsal area of the foot “flicks” against the floor:  it should flick the marble sideways into the wall, or sideways into the room depending on whether it is the “flic” or the “flac” part of the movement.

One year an enterprising student gave me a bundle of marbles and we tried using a few to see if the image worked in reality.  It did!  Of course marbles rolling around on a dance floor isn't usually a good thing, but using one or two to demonstrate flic-flacs can help a student achieve the correct sensation.

So try a couple of marbles in flic-flac turns – it’s fun and enlightening!

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets:

Secret #20j:  
“Use marbles to illustrate the correct action of the foot in flic-flac turns.”

                Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
““Hold fast to dreams,
For if dreams die
Life is a broken-winged bird,
That cannot fly.”
Langston Hughes

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Thursday, July 24, 2014

Throwback Thursday and Jacques d'Amboise


Throwback Thursday and Jacques d'Amboise

Born on in July 1934, Jacques d'Amboise will celebrate his 80th birthday this month.  He has been retired from performing for 35 years, but I had the privilege of meeting him and seeing him perform on more than one occasion when I was a fledgling dancer.  I found him to be a wonderful person as well as an amazing performer.

His dance career began when he sat reluctantly through his sister’s ballet classes.  One day the teacher challenged him to try a changement, and the rest, as they say, is history.  By age seventeen, he was a principal dancer with the New York City Ballet.  He danced in many of Balanchine’s ballets, and went on to choreograph many himself, including The Chase and Irish Fantasy.  He also appeared in the movies:  Seven Brides for Seven Brothers, Carousel, and The Best Things in Life are Free.

While a principal with NYC Ballet, he founded The National Dance Institute.  He believes in the absolute necessity of arts education and is a tireless teacher and promoter – not with the goal of producing professional dancers, but with the idea to develop excellence and engagement in young people.  He says that what matters most to him is “loving and learning”.

Today more than 6,000 children take classes at NDI, and there are more than 40,000 that do so worldwide.

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets:

Dance History Factoid #40:  
 “Jacques d'Amboise is a famous American ballet dancer.”

                Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“"How can I more loving? How can I be more kind?"
-          Hafez

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Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Weird Wednesday and Plié Houses


Weird Wednesday and Plié Houses

When working with small children and introducing them to beginning steps in ballet, imagery and game playing is crucial.  Of course, any of these early images can be used by advanced dancers too!

In second position, the shape created in the legs by a correct plié, is the shape of a house with a slight peak in the roof line.  Children love this image, since most of them have drawn pictures of houses.  It is often combined in a lesson with the diamond shape that is created in a first position plié.

It also helps to explain that the house must be strong and straight.   Simply saying this usually makes the students lift and align their posture.

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets:

Secret #2l:  
“A plié in second position makes the shape of a house.”

                Link of the Day:


Quote of the Day:
“Houses are like people - some you like and some you don't like - and once in a while there is one you love.”
L.M. Montgomery, Emily Climbs

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Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Tuesday Glissades


Tuesday Glissades

Glissade is one of the first steps a dancer learns in the center, and it is one of the most critical of the linking steps.  It utilizes the energy pattern I call an under-circle that I have blogged about before:  http://balletwebb.blogspot.com/2013/12/terrific-tuesday-and-temps-lie.html.

A glissade moves from one foot to one foot.  This is very similar to the jump sissone that moves from two feet to one foot.  Designing a combination using only glissades and sissones can provide a challenge for an advanced dancer!

There is a lift, or breath, in the body in fifth position (the up to go down to go up) that precedes the initiating plié; then the foot extends and the dancer pushes off from the supporting foot, the weight transfers to the leading foot using the feeling of the under circle.

In a glissade, the dancer must remember to extend the legs fully and travel.

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets:

Secret #13i:  
A glissade moves from one foot to one foot with an under-circle energy.”

                Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
Travel and change of place impart new vigor to the mind.”
-         Seneca

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Monday, July 21, 2014

Madcap Monday Bubbles


Madcap Monday Bubbles

One common problem many dancers have is not reaching out - covering enough space - when they dance.   They could dance on a postage stamp!  This usually happens when a student is unsure of the movement and “pulls back”, or “pulls inward”.

This is exactly opposite what should be done to create movement effectively.  I have talked before about how the arms and legs need to reach out – stepping to a piqué, for example, requires the dancer to step beyond the point on the floor where the working foot extends.

A good image for this problem is this:  Imagine dancing inside a giant bubble.  The bubble is large enough to require an extended reach of the arms and legs (and even the head).  Always reach out enough to brush the inside of the bubble.

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets:

Secret #16i:  
“Imagine dancing inside a giant bubble and reach out enough to touch it with your hands and feet.”


                Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“When a person starts to talk about their dreams, it's as if something bubbles up from within. Their eyes brighten, their face glows, and you can feel the excitement in their words.
-          John C. Maxwell

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Sunday, July 20, 2014

Sunday Sharing of Nothing


Sunday Sharing of Nothing

The TV show Seinfeld became famous as a show about “nothing”.   This got me to thinking about the role that “nothing” plays in our lives.

It is the small, seemingly insignificant things that make life rich.  For instance, husbands and wives share not only big things, like having children, buying a house, etc.; but on a day to day basis they share an intimate web of small things:  conversations, inside jokes, observations, or shared laughter at an old commercial.  Friends, especially those of long standing, operate in a similar fashion.  Those who have lost a spouse or friend often say it’s the little things they miss the most.

So don’t discount those short conversations, casual glances, or loving smiles.  They all add up to make life wonderful and full.

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets:

Motivational Secret #35:  
“Embrace the sharing of ‘nothing’ things.”

                Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
The pleasantest things in the world are pleasant thoughts: and the great art of life is to have as many of them as possible.”
-       Montaigne

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Saturday, July 19, 2014

Super Saturday One Good Turn


Super Saturday One Good Turn

There are many traditions in classical ballet, and I have covered several of them in this blog.  Here is another one, Secret #7z“When changing to the other side at the barre, turn (usually soutenu) toward the barre.”

This holds true any time it is between combinations and the dancer is moving from finishing one side to beginning the exercise on the other side.  If, however, the soutenu is a part of the combination of steps, it can, and often does, go away from the barre, especially if the combination is reversed.

But the general rule stands:  When changing sides, remember to turn toward the barre.

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets:

Secret #7z:  
“When changing to the other side at the barre, turn (soutenu) toward the barre.”

                Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“If you have no good drive in you, your life will not be steered through a good direction. It will miss its destined station. Passion or drive is what moves the vehicle of a fulfilled life.”
― Israelmore Ayivor

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Friday, July 18, 2014

Fun Friday Oldie but Goodie


Fun Friday Oldie but Goodie

This is an old, but excellent image for maintaining turn-out in an attitude devant.  It helps to demonstrate this with an actual prop, and to start by having the dancer place their foot on the barre in the correct position.

  With the leg on the barre, place a paper cup, or a glass, or a coffee cup, or any other stable and relatively lightweight item readily available in a dance classroom, onto the ankle/heel of the dancer’s working foot.  Explain that this is the image they should have in their mind any time they perform an attitude devant.  Now, if the object is unbreakable, have the dancer try to remove the leg from the barre without dropping the item.  Yes, it is almost impossible, but the point is well taken.

The technically perfect attitude devant is achievable by a very few select individuals, although getting close to this perfection is within the grasp of most dancers given enough time and training. 

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets:

Secret #20i:  
“Balance an object on the heel of the working foot to maintain correct turn-out.”

                Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“The delicate balance of mentoring someone is not creating them in your own image, but giving them the opportunity to create themselves.
-          ­Steven Spielberg


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Thursday, July 17, 2014

Throwback Thursday and Martha Graham


Throwback Thursday and Martha Graham

Martha Graham’s influence on modern dance has been compared to the influence of masters in other areas such as Picasso and Stravinsky.  Often called the mother of modern dance, Martha Graham didn't begin serious dance study until she was in her 20s, yet she created the “only fully comprehensive sets of techniques that exist in modern dance”, according to writer Josh Mapes.  She danced professionally until she was 76.

Graham’s technique is based on the principles of contraction and release.  This contraction of the spine and rib cage creates a unique, aggressive style in the dancer.  This overt physicality was revolutionary, especially compared to graceful ballet technique where the effort is designed to be hidden.

Also called “the Picasso of dance”, Martha Graham worked with George Balanchine, Aaron Copeland, and even movie stars like Bette Davis and Gregory Peck.

Some of her most famous works include “Seraphic Dialogue”, “Lamentation” and “Appalachian Spring”.  She died in 1991, leaving the dance world an enduring legacy.

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets:

Dance History Factoid #39:  
“Martha Graham is often called “the mother of modern dance”.

                Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“Carve your name on hearts, not tombstones. A legacy is etched into the minds of others and the stories they share about you.”
Shannon L. Alder

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Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Wacky Wednesday and the Magic Coil


Wacky Wednesday and the Magic Coil

If you have ever watched a cat preparing to leap you probably noticed their “plié”.  But you may have also noticed a little wiggle in their back side just before they pounce.  This is what I refer to as “coiling”.  It is a storing of energy that is released at the moment of spring.  Of course dancers have to “coil” without the wiggle, but the energy needs to be the same.

It is like I mentioned in a previous blog about a sling shot, or the one about a place to go before you go where you are going.  This coiling of energy is difficult to describe, but unmistakable to see.  Most dancers “get it” early in their training, usually as a result of “sitting” in their plies and discovering that sitting is the opposite sensation - and it doesn't work!

So observe some cats at play and you will see this distinctive coiling action.  Then try it in your own technique!

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets:

Secret #7y:  
“Remember the magic coil.”

                Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“Even if you fall on your face, you’re still moving forward.”
-          Victor Kiam

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Tuesday, July 15, 2014

Technical Tuesday Rain


Technical Tuesday Rain

In many cultures, the clavicles (collar bones) are considered to be signs of beauty.  In ballet, correct posture dictates that these “beauty areas” be opened and visible.  If a dancer slouches forward, the head drops and the clavicles recede into shadow.  Instead, allow them to open to the light!

The opening of the upper chest also fosters the lengthening of the spine and thereby allows the correct alignment to fall (or “pull up”) into place.

Imagine that the area around the clavicles opens outward, allowing the light in, and enabling the space above these two beauty bones to collect water from a gentle rainfall.

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets:

Secret #1dd:  
“Imagine opening the area around the clavicles (collar bones) to allow them to collect rainwater.”

                Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“Criticism, like rain, should be gentle enough to nourish a man's growth without destroying his roots.
-          Frank A. Clark


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Monday, July 14, 2014

Mad Monday Statute


Mad Monday Statute

It is time, once again, for yet another Ballet Statute.  This one is usually known instinctively by anyone who has taken ballet for any time at all.  It states simply:  There is no halfway in ballet.

There is no halfway in anything when it comes to ballet.  No halfway in taking class, no halfway efforts, no halfway extension into a piqué or a relevé – no halfway at all!  And especially no halfway attitude!  (The mental kind - not the ballet position.)

So go for the gusto, pull out all the stops, push to the limit, and any other clichés you can think of!  And anytime the temptation arises to go only halfway – remember Ballet Statute #20!

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets:

Ballet Statue #20:  
“There is no halfway in ballet.”

                Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:

“Continuous effort - not strength or intelligence - is the key to unlocking our potential.”
-          Winston Churchill


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Sunday, July 13, 2014

Sunday Enemy


Sunday Enemy

Yes, it tends to be true:  dancers are often their own worst enemy.  Granted, we hear a litany of criticism every day, and positive reinforcement comes infrequently or not at all.  So I guess it is not a surprise that dancers pick up the habit of criticism and reflect it back on themselves.

But this is not a good thing.  This thought pattern of negative self-talk can truly be a bad enemy.  Instead, change that self-talk!  Tell yourself positive things, and focus on the good things that happen in class or in each day.  Embrace the compliments and encouragement you do get, and don’t gloss over them.  Replace any negative thoughts immediately with positive ones.

It takes practice.  But we know all about that!

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets:

Motivational Secret #34:  
“Are you your worst enemy?

                Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“Your worst enemy cannot harm you as much as your own unguarded thoughts.”
-          Buddha

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Saturday, July 12, 2014

Saturday Ears


Saturday Ears

Yes, it is yet another blog about posture.  But posture, is, as you remember, is the most important thing in ballet technique.  So here is today’s offering:   When pulling up, remember to pull up from the ears and not from the chest.

Pulling up from the chest seems to be the natural response, but it is the wrong one!  Lifting from the chest  causes the back to arch, which in turn causes the chin to drop (for counterbalance), causing a horrible cascading series of events that completely ruins the posture.  Aaaaargh!

Instead, imagine lifting from the ears.  It works very effectively to maintain the correct “forward from the ankles” alignment so necessary for good technique.

It’s all in the ears!

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets:

Secret #1cc
Lift from the ears.

                Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“Drag your thoughts away from your troubles... by the ears, by the heels, or any other way you can manage it.
-          Mark Twain

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Friday, July 11, 2014

Fun Friday on the Edge



Fun Friday on the Edge

Every dancer has heard “roll through the feet”.   We understand this to mean that the foot passes through several interim positions on the way down from a full relevé to the finishing point of having the whole foot on the floor.   This is particularly important in pointe work.

The tendency is to roll from full pointe to demi-pointe and on downward.  But this misses a critical moment:  the edge of the pointe shoe between the tip of the box and the place behind the metatarsals of the foot. The place in between full pointe and demi-pointe!  In order to “roll through” and not miss this edge requires an extra lift in the foot just prior to the descent. 

So when rolling down from full pointe, don’t forget the critical edge!


From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets:

Secret #8g:
“When rolling down from full pointe, remember to include the edge of the pointe shoe before the demi-pointe.”


                Link of the Day:



Quote of the Day:

“One test of the correctness of educational procedure is the happiness of the child.”
-          Maria Montessori

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Thursday, July 10, 2014

Throwback Thursday and a Disruptive Ballet


Throwback Thursday and a Disruptive Ballet

It happened in Paris in 1913. In the newly completed Theatre de Champs-Elysees, Diaghiliev’s Ballet Russe was about to debut their newest production:  Le Sacre du printemps (The Rite of Spring).  It was the event of the year, and it seemed that all of Paris was there.

But almost as soon as the curtain rose on the odd, angular and turned-in choreography of Vaslav Nijinsky, and the never-before-heard dissonant style of music of Stravinsky, the trouble began.  The audience began to react violently to the scene before them, beginning with whistles that became hisses.  Soon it deteriorated into pushing, shoving and yelling.  More than forty audience members were escorted from the theater, but it did little to quiet the ruckus.  Even turning on the house lights had no effect.

The noise from the audience was so loud that the music couldn’t be heard by the dancers and Nijinsky was forced to stand in the wings, beating time with a stick so the dancers could maintain their tempo.

Stravinsky’s music is now regarded as one of the greatest musical achievements of the 20th century, but on the eve of May 29, 1913, it enraged the audience who regarded it as “noise”.

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets:

Dance History Factoid #38:  
“The debut performance of ‘The Rite of Spring’ in 1913 caused a riot in the theater.”

                Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“I've heard there are troubles of more than one kind; some come from ahead, and some come from behind. But I've brought a big bat. I'm all ready, you see; now my troubles are going to have troubles with me!
-          Dr. Seuss

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Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Wild Wednesday Control Zone


Wild Wednesday Control Zone

The position of the leg known as à la seconde is an interesting animal.  Although strict classical technique dictates that the leg should be placed exactly at the dancer’s side (paper-doll or steam roller style), in reality this is seldom the case. 

It is the dancer’s degree of turn-out that determines the placement of the leg.  If a student with little turn-out tries to put the leg exactly to the side, the result is a turned-in leg and lifted hip.  If the leg is instead placed in the student’s “control zone” – where their turn-out allows the position without sacrificing the rotation of the leg – this placement will actually allow the student to develop more turn-out and, over time, the leg will be able to be placed further back.

So I emphasize to my students that they need to be aware of where their individual “control zone” is, and use that placement to foster the development of greater turn-out.


From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets:

Secret #3h:  
“In à la seconde, the leg is usually not located at the dancer’s exact side, but is slightly in front of the side seam.  This ‘control zone’ allows for maximum rotation of the leg.”


                Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“Every accomplishment begins with the decision to try.”
-          Esther Thomas

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Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Tuesday Sleep on It


Tuesday Sleep on It

There is an interesting phenomenon I have noticed about the way we humans process information – particularly things involving muscle memory.  When learning a new skill, or honing an old one, often the first day of practice involves little, if any, visible progress - and usually a lot of stumbling.  This is, to say the least, disheartening.

But after a good night’s sleep, the mental and physical pieces seem to have been assembled (by elves?) correctly and the new skill is now easier!  Magic!

Actually, there are scientific studies that show this to be true.  To quote from today’s link:  “…sleep itself has a role in the consolidation of memory, which is essential for learning new information.”  Aha!  It isn't magic after all – or elves.  It is simply the way it works.

So the next time you feel discouraged about your progress, get a good night’s sleep.  You might be surprised by the things that fall into place the next day!


From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets:
Secret #36:  

“Sleep on it.”

                Link of the Day:

http://healthysleep.med.harvard.edu/healthy/matters/benefits-of-sleep/learning-memory

Quote of the Day:

““People say, 'I'm going to sleep now,' as if it were nothing. But it's really a bizarre activity. 'For the next several hours, while the sun is gone, I'm going to become unconscious, temporarily losing command over everything I know and understand. When the sun returns, I will resume my life.'

If you didn't know what sleep was, and you had only seen it in a science fiction movie, you would think it was weird and tell all your friends about the movie you'd seen.

They had these people, you know? And they would walk around all day and be OK? And then, once a day, usually after dark, they would lie down on these special platforms and become unconscious. They would stop functioning almost completely, except deep in their minds they would have adventures and experiences that were completely impossible in real life. As they lay there, completely vulnerable to their enemies, their only movements were to occasionally shift from one position to another; or, if one of the 'mind adventures' got too real, they would sit up and scream and be glad they weren't unconscious anymore. Then they would drink a lot of coffee.'

So, next time you see someone sleeping, make believe you're in a science fiction movie. And whisper, 'The creature is regenerating itself.”
George Carlin, Brain Droppings

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