2 3 Ballet Webb: 2018

Monday, December 31, 2018

New Year’s Eve




Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“I hope that in this year to come, you make mistakes.

Because if you are making mistakes, then you are making new things, trying new things, learning, living, pushing yourself, changing yourself, changing your world. You're doing things you've never done before, and more importantly, you're Doing Something.

So that's my wish for you, and all of us, and my wish for myself. Make New Mistakes. Make glorious, amazing mistakes. Make mistakes nobody's ever made before. Don't freeze, don't stop, don't worry that it isn't good enough, or it isn't perfect, whatever it is: art, or love, or work or family or life.

Whatever it is you're scared of doing, Do it.

Make your mistakes, next year and forever.”
― Neil Gaiman

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Sunday, December 30, 2018

Sunday New Beginnings



Sunday New Beginnings

As we come to the conclusion of one year and the start of a brand-new one, think about the magic that exists in every fresh start.

I’m sure this is why people make resolutions and do such things as cleaning out their house, etc. at the start of a new year. It’s inspirational and motivational to start anew.

Dancers do this every day since each class provides new way to progress and perfect old skills. It’s ironic that despite the repetitive nature of ballet, it still allows a fresh beginning every day.

Consider new beginnings and how magical they can be.

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets
Motivational Secret #139:
“Consider the magic of new beginnings.”

Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“I used to dream about escaping my ordinary life, but my life was never ordinary. I had simply failed to notice how extraordinary it was.”
― Ransom Riggs, Miss Peregrine's Home for Peculiar Children

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Saturday, December 29, 2018

Saturday Chimney Sweep



Saturday Chimney Sweep

Especially in the British Isles, people believe that chimney sweeps bring good luck. This may come from the story of a chimney sweep rescuing King George III from a runaway horse. But there is also the tale of a worker, covered with soot, being saved after he slipped and ended up dangling from a ledge. The person who rescued him was a woman, and she later became his wife.

At any rate, encountering a chimney sweep or shaking his hand is believed to bring good luck. And even today some bridal couples hire a chimney sweep – in full costume - to meet them outside the church after the wedding to shake their hands and/or kiss the bride.

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets
Superstition #129:
“Chimney sweeps are believed to bring good luck.”

Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“My optimism wears heavy boots and is loud.”
― Henry Rollins

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Friday, December 28, 2018

Fun Friday Heel Pop



Fun Friday Heel Pop

A very common problem in pirouette preparations is popping the heel. That is, allowing the heel of the back foot to come off the ground during the plié and immediately before the turn. This prevents a good solid preparation, to say the least.

To help stop this habit, practice pirouettes without putting the back foot on the ground. Keep it in passé, and use only the force of the supporting foot’s plié as the major impetus.

Yes, you won’t have as much force, and you’ll probably only achieve a single turn, but it is a good way to break the pop-the-heel habit.

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets
Secret #14ww:
“Prepare for a pirouette using only one foot to prevent popping the heel.”

Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“A man who can't bear to share his habits is a man who needs to quit them.”
― Stephen King, The Dark Tower

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Thursday, December 27, 2018

Throwback Thursday and Buddy Bradley



Throwback Thursday and Buddy Bradley

Clarence “Buddy” Bradley was born on July 24, 1905 in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. He was a self-taught dancer who debuted in the Florence Mills Revue in New York in 1926. He also staged dances for Ziegfeld, George White and the renowned black revue Blackbirds. He also choreographed for such notables as Eleanor Powell and Ruby Keeler.

In 1933 he moved to London to work on the musical Evergreen. He was the first black dancer to work in an all white show. In 1932 he worked with Frederick Ashton and taught ballerina Alicia Markova how to dance with “snake hips”.

He went on to open his own dance studio in London which he ran until 1967. All the while he continued to choreograph, not only in England but also in Switzerland, France, Italy and Spain.

His choreography combines elements of jazz, tap, modern and ballet. He also used movements he observed in ice shows. In the 1950s he formed his own company to perform in variety shows and on television.

Buddy Bradley died on July 17, 1972 in New York.


From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets
Dance History Secret #204:
“Buddy Bradley coached Alicia Markova on how to dance with snake hips.”

Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“Bring something incomprehensible into the world!”
― Gilles Deleuze

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Wednesday, December 26, 2018

Wacky Wednesday Paddle



Wacky Wednesday Paddle

A fun way for students to practice spotting is any exercise involving paddle turns. It can be part of a character class or just a character combination, but either way helps perfect the art of spotting. And I am a big believer in adding “fun” to ballet classes.

Spotting is critical to success in almost all turning movements, so developing and perfecting this skill is important for students and professionals alike.

As an example of what I consider paddle turns, refer to the Link of the Day below.

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets
Secret #14vv:
“Have students do paddle turns to practice spotting.”

Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“You are likely to fall when you stop paddling your bicycle. Such is life. As long as you don’t give up, you will never end up failing!”
― Israelmore Ayivor, Daily Drive 365

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Tuesday, December 25, 2018

Merry Christmas!




Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“My idea of Christmas, whether old-fashioned or modern, is very simple: loving others. Come to think of it, why do we have to wait for Christmas to do that?”
― Bob Hope

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Monday, December 24, 2018

Marvelous Monday Christmas Eve





From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets
Secret #24:
Wishing everyone a wonderful Christmas Eve!

Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“It always is Christmas Eve, in a ghost story.”
― Jerome K. Jerome, Gaslit Nightmares: Stories by Robert W. Chambers, Charles Dickens, Richard Marsh, and Others

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Sunday, December 23, 2018

Sunday Fingerprints of Kindness


Sunday Fingerprints of Kindness



From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets
Motivational Secret #:
“Never think you don’t have an impact.”

Link of the Day:



Quote of the Day:
Be the reason someone smiles. Be the reason someone feels loved and believes in the goodness in people.”
― Roy T. Bennett

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Saturday, December 22, 2018

Saturday Palace Hauntings



Saturday Palace Hauntings

The Palace Theatre in New York is said to be home to several ghosts. The building is located on Broadway at West 47th Street and was built in 1913.

During the early part of the 20th century the theatre was one of the world’s most famous vaudeville stages, hosting everyone from Mae West to Fred Astaire. There is theatrical saying “to play the Palace” that means one has finally made the big time.

Vaudeville faded into history but the Palace Theatre still retains its ghosts – over one hundred of them, according to Playbill. There is the cellist, dressed in a white gown; a sad girl who peers from the balcony; a little boy who rolls trucks near the mezzanine; and a man in a brown suit who walks past office doors – to name just a few.

The most famous ghost is said to be that of Judy Garland and she is felt most strongly near a door that was built for her in the rear of the orchestra .


From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets
Superstition #128:
“The Palace Theatre in New York is home to several ghosts.”

Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“Always be a first-rate version of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of somebody else.”
― Judy Garland

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Friday, December 21, 2018

Fun Friday Corner



Fun Friday Corner

Fouettés and à la seconde turns are fun and challenging. The most important thing is to maintain a constant position when in second, and use the plié. No surprise here.

But something that may surprise you is that the plié (and in fouettés the plié with the extension from attitude to devant) happens as the dancer faces the corner. That’s right and you can see it in today’s video below – if you aren’t distracted by watching her pirouettes!

Anyway, in à la seconde turns and fouettés, the plié happens as the dancer faces the corner, not directly front.


From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets
Secret #14uu:
“In à la seconde turns or fouettés, plié facing the corner, not directly front.”

Link of the Day:

Quote of the Day:
“Every corner and room of a house will carry memories, make these the most pleasurable times you shared with your family.”
― Anthony Liccione

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