2 3 Wondrous Wednesday Far Enough | Ballet Webb

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Wondrous Wednesday Far Enough

Wondrous Wednesday Far Enough

Ah, those details. From the first moment of class when the dancer comes to stand at the barre, there are rules. Lots of them.

For example, standing at the barre is not as simple as it appears. The dancer must not be too close to the barre, or too far way. The arm on the barre must be relaxed, with the elbow dropped, unlike in a standard à la seconde position, where the elbow is higher than the wrist and lower than the shoulder. The elbow is never squashed up next to the body - there is always a space between the elbow and the torso.

The barre arm must also be in front of the dancer’s torso. There is often a tendency for the hand on the barre to slide back with the elbow lifted, especially when doing a difficult combination. The barre should be imagined as a partner: no leaning, squeezing, lifting or any other thing you wouldn’t do to a human partner is allowed.

Also, the hand on the barre shouldn’t have a “death grip”. It should be placed there gently, but firmly, and some teachers require that the thumb be placed on top of the barre and not underneath. Some classrooms have barres with a flattened shape (as opposed to rounded) to better facilitate the placement of the hand on top.

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets:

Secret #7kk:  
“The barre arm should be relaxed and slightly in front of the body.”

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Quote of the Day:
““Time is the longest distance between two places.”
Tennessee Williams, The Glass Menagerie

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