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Ballet Talk for Dancers
Guest BilboBaggins

Do Ballet Dads have unique perspectives?

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Guest happycc

Since my husband is not a computer kind of person I will describe the situation for us. My husband is a lot older than your typical dad. He is 58yrs old with a 9yrs, 7yrs and 5yrs. He doesn't have this need to prove his machismo thing. It seems to me he is the most comfortable observing dad there. There are a few dads who actually dance there but I am not comparing him to them. My husband can;t shake his boody for anything.

 

He doesnt mind hanging out at the dance studio. In fact he prefers it. My husband likes women and is not intimitated by them. He finds talking to the women at the dance studio fascinating. He enjoys sitting there reading his book and listening to the teen girls jabber about stuff. He finds it rather amusing. He is in law enforcement and enjoys the discipline expected in this particular dance studio. The school directors are strict and don't allow any horseplaying. It is taken very seriously.

 

Although he fought in Vietnam in the Army he doesn't want his sons nor daughters in the military but feels that dance is right next to the military in terms of discipline and committment.

 

He values fit and healthy bodies as he is a cyclist. My husband also plays the guitar so he is very appreciative of the fine arts. One of his nephews is a cook and the other is an opera singer and piano player. So taking all of this my husband has been very supportive and understanding of this whole endeavor. I don't think any of his fellow police officers have given him any trouble that his son is a dancer. Maybe they talk about it behind his back.

 

Although I am considerably younger than my hubbie, my parents (especially my father) I believe have issues with my son being a dancer. We don't talk about it much but it might be a cultural thing. My family is Asian. I don't know except the few Asian families I do know would never allow their son to dance.

 

He does the transporting and waiting but I do the signing up and making of the schedule since I am the stay at home parent. Perhaps it will change when he retires. He is really good at making sure the girls have their hair up and they are changed although several times in the beginning he dressed the girls with their tights over their leotards and their leotards backwards. Eventually the girls learned quickly and dress themselves. He watches the class and makes sure my kids are paying attention and listening to the teacher-obeying. He plays rhythm games with them at home. Turning on the music and ask if they can clap the beat kind of game.

 

I do wonder at times if my son and his father would have more to talk about if my son had baseball, soccer, football or basketball. But since my son is terrified by ###### and overwhelmed by the games and rules itself, my husband knows it wouldn't work and wants my son to be happy more than anything else.

 

In terms of the clothing, my husband wears these tight shirts and leggings and bike shorts for cycling so I guess seeing his son wear tight fitting clothes won't bug him either.

 

I just feel blessed that my husband is the perfect father for my kids.

 

Carolyn

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Mel Johnson
Although he fought in Vietnam in the Army he doesn't want his sons nor daughters in the military but feels that dance is right next to the military in terms of discipline and committment.

God bless the man! I agree with him; I was in the Air Force and in most of Asia during my time in. I found classes to take in Vietnam, Japan, and the Philippines. I remember telling one of the kids in my class when I was stationed in Miami and he asked me what I was doing in the service, that I was doing it so that one day he wouldn't have to worry about it. I agree with him about the discipline. If anything, the dance world is more demanding of self-discipline and control, because there is no Uniform Code of Military Justice hanging over your head. There is only the unemployment line!

 

And bless your son, too; may he dance in joy!

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Guest BalletAuthor

Thanks for the background (I asked on another thread, but then found this one)!

 

In re

My family is Asian. I don't know except the few Asian families I do know would never allow their son to dance.

 

Happily there are lots of WONDERFUL Asian & Asian bi-racial male classical ballet dancers out there!

 

Ikolo Griffin at Dance Theater of Harlem, James Moore at Pittsburgh Ballet Theater, Kristoffer Sakurai at the Royal Danish, Tong Wang and Du Hai at Ballet West, and Jonathan Mangosang and Hansuke Yamamoto at SF Ballet, just to name a very few. These are just the ones who I know off the top of my head! There are LOTS of others so fortunately there are Asian families whose sons not only dance as adults, but have been dancing since they were young children! :wub:

 

On another hopeful note, you never know how this will play out but my ds's primary teacher when he was in his teens was Cuban (his other teachers were a really international bunch most of the rest were from Latin America and Europe so there was a lot of "football" talk) and because he and his students spent so many hours a day together they became friendly. The boys taught him to swear in English and he taught them (among other things such as ballet) to LOVE the World Cup! Ds'll watch soccer even when he is watching in a language he doesn't understand, so if he'd had a father I suppose they could have watched together. My son also LOVES American football and when he lived overseas I videotaped the 49'ers game every week and airmailed them to Europe, just so he could get a fix, oh well...so much for stereotypes...Ds and his childhood friends (all professional dancers) as well as the men in his company also play American football whenever they have the chance...just a bunch of "jocks" in tights! :)

 

The point is that as your ds grows and matures he may develop interests that are broader and he may find that he has a great deal in common with his dad outside of the ballet classroom and of course as your dh (driving husband :rolleyes: ) learns more about ballet they will have that in common too!

 

Hope it helps a bit!

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gbna

Although I am not Asian, I do know a number of Chinese men who are very much into dance, particularly the Lion Dance. They are also involved in Kung fu, which is very related.

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Guest happycc

I haven't been on for awhile. Got caught up with the busyness of life.

Thank you for all the info about Asian male dancers. Glad to know my son isn't alone.

 

Yes-Lion Dancing.....definitely Chinese dancing. By the way I got some video off of www.chinasprouts.com about Chinese Dancing. Some beautiful stuff.

 

 

Carolyn

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Guest happycc

mel: While you were in Asia...how were the dance classes there?

Is there a dance school in China?

Carolyn

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gbna

Beijing Opera has a dance corp with it, I believe. When I was in China for a kung fu tour we visited a number of places that had wu shu, a very stylized form of martial arts that is part martial art, part dance, part gymnastics.

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Guest BalletAuthor

Beijing Dance Academy (est. 1954 as the Beijing Dance School) [National Ballet of China], Shanghai Ballet Academy [shanghai Ballet], Hong Kong International Summer Dance School all come to mind.

 

Just based on names, PBT appears to have a number of Chinese or other Asian dancers (or at least dancers of Chinese/Asian extraction, who may or may not have been born or trained in the US v. China). Alas, the website does NOT provide links to bios so I can't easily see where all these folks studied. I am sure there are more than the 3 above, but right now I am too tired to search further...Good Night!

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