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Ballet Talk for Dancers

A Surreal Experience

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Today in class -- an advanced class I take which is difficult for me, but which has very definitely improved my ability to pick up combinations -- I saw the most surreal thing. In fact I couldn't focus on class I was so mesmerized by how awful it was. A woman, probably in her 30s, who clearly had no sense of proper placement, turnout, alignment, you name it, doing the barre and beginning center on pointe. When I say on pointe I use the word loosely -- her releves, well I guess you could kindly call them releves -- were bend knee, roll up to point, straighten knee -- and she was never, ever on the box on either foot, just sort of trying to balance on the edge. It was so extraordinary I just couldn't look away.


This class is one where the instructor 'gives' rather than 'teaches' -- it's not my primary class -- and there are no specific corrections, rather occasional comments directed at the class as a whole. For the most part you're left pretty much alone. There are quite a few professionals and even some teachers in this class and I just kept wishing that someone would say something -- sooner or later she's going to break an ankle!


There, I feel better now.

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There seems to be at least one person like this in almost every open class I've ever seen! It's always horrifying, and the poor person just seems to have absolutely no sense of reality at all. But the teacher even allowing someone like that to work in pointe shoes is very discouraging, and does not say much for the policy of the school or that teacher. Of course "giving" class doesn't say much for them either. :rolleyes::D

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Yikes! I've had some pretty bad experiences. I've had "students" jump out in front of me during a grand allegro leap, very disconcerting.

Sometimes I see women put on the pointe shoes, and afterward walk out of the studio with a cane. Teachers want business, but they need to know when to say no.



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Guest grace

MJ - "Sometimes I see women put on the pointe shoes, and afterward walk out of the studio with a cane. " - are you serious?


i am just posting to say that what fascinates ME is the morbid curiosity which these 'students' evoke - one simply CAN'T look away!


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Theres a woman like that in one open class I take. The teacher has long since stopped trying to work with her to improve, acknowledging the woman does not have any interest in getting better or doing anything correctly. She is always in her own little world of ballet. But they seem to know ehre there and shes happy. I just make sure I stay far away from her with her wild moves.

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Grace, your post made me start to think about why I couldn't look away and I think it's because her behavior appears so antithetical to our attitudes towards class. We are there to practice, to learn, to participate, and to take what the teacher and fellow students have to give. She on the other hand, was floating out there in the ozone and you don't have to pay $12 to do that.


I just couldn't imagine forking over my hard earned dough and then ignoring my surroundings!

Edited by pleiades
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