2 3 Technical Tuesday Body Positions | Ballet Webb

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Technical Tuesday Body Positions

Technical Tuesday Body Positions

I’ve talked before about how ballet technique is based on illusion. A large part of this involves the set positions of the body, and these positions vary only slightly from school to school.

I usually teach the basic 8 positions of the Cecchetti school:  Croisé Devant, à la Quatrième Devant, Effacé Devant,  à la Seconde,  Croisé Derrière,  Ecarté,  Epaulé, and à la Quatrième Derrière.  Other schools of training add Ecarté Derrière and Epaulé Derrière. (See today's video link for a complete description of these positions.)

I begin by teaching students the French terms:  Devant: To the front; Derrière: To the back; and Croisé: Crossed. These are important concepts since all of balletic line is based on these positions. But it goes beyond that. The correct execution of these body positions not only makes the dancer look beautiful, but also allows the proper counterweight between the upper body and a high, extended working leg.

The body positions are therefore both beautiful and practical.

From the Big Blue Book of Ballet Secrets:

Ballet Secret #18p:  
“The set positions of the body allow dancers to create beautiful lines.”

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