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Ballet Talk for Dancers

30-year old male beginner

Guest Anders

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Hello all!


I'm a 30 year old lawyer (male) who spent the last one and a half years in St. Petersburg, Russia. Although far from a ballet buff when I first arrived (and, honestly, still not very knowledgable), the city will simply not allow you to miss seeing a number of Swan Lakes, Nutcrackers, etc. at one or more of its numerous classical venues. I was charmed. When I returned to my native Stockholm a week ago, I immediately signed up for an extra curricular beginners course in ballet at the Stockholm ballet academy. I realize that for ballet purposes I'm way over the hill, but I'm doing it to hopefully be able to put my body at the service of beauty (not just beer).


Anyway, my first class is next Thursday, and I'd like to know a few things before I go. I asked the instructor what I should wear and she said tights. I know nothing about tights. As to shoes, she said that just socks would do for the first lesson. Would anyone like to give me the low-down on ballet apparel? What are tights, what do I wear on top (t-shirt?), and all the more mind boggling, what do I wear UNDER them? I'm grateful for all the pointers I can get...


Also, I'd like to hear your views on the age issue and any other experiences you might wish to share.




(This message has also been posted on the male dancers forum.)

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Guest linsusanr

Hi Anders,


That's great that you're going to start ballet! Good for you. To be sure, you're not "over the hill" -- there are seniors in some of my classes and they are doing fine. Every person has his or her own reasons for dancing. We all accept this in class and have a good time learning. Good luck! :)



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  • Administrators

Susan, I'm not sure that I would call someone of 30 a senior! :) Anders, I think if you post on the Men's board you will get the answers you need about the proper attire! In the meantime, tights are the leggings that all dancers wear, and men need a dancebelt, which you will need to get at a dancewear store. A tee shirt will be fine too, and if you get a stretch belt to hold up the tights that would be good. Good luck with your new classes, and welcome to Ballet and to Ballet Alert Online! :)


[ 09-04-2001: Message edited by: Victoria Leigh ]

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Guest linsusanr

My goodness, Ms. Leigh, I didn't mean folks who are 30 are seniors! I meant that there are people of all ages in class and everyone is doing fine. I apologize for the misunderstanding! :eek:



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I was teasing you, Susan ;) I knew that was not what you really meant!

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Thanks Susan and Victoria for your interest. I appreciate it. :) I'm going down to a ballet shop now to check out some of those mystifying garments! I'm very happy to hear that I am not a senior! ;) (No offence of course to seniors :) )I wonder what chances you might give me to actually perform (if not professionally then at least in some amateur forum), and how often you would have an older beginner like me practice.

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As to performing opportunities for adult students, very often there will be cases where an adult is needed for a supernumerary role, like a parent in Nutcracker or a spear-carrier in Aida or something. As to the frequency of classes for an adult, I would break in gently, starting with maybe two or three times a week, and then, if you like, you can take class every day, but by that time, you won't be an absolute adult beginner any more! :)

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  • 3 weeks later...
Guest lara anne

Hi Anders,

I'm new to this so I'm not sure how to respond directly back to someone. Anyway, if you find this message, I responded back to YOUR response to MY 1st post called "So Nice To Meet you" from last week (or something like that!)

Let me know if you find it. Any advice about the best way to respond directly back to someone else's response would be appreciated as well! Thanks,


-Lara Anne

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Hi Lara Anne!


This is as good a way as any to reach me. I always check my old threads as well as any other threads where I've posted (and most other topics as well :) ) Hence I've already seen your reply to my reply to your topic :rolleyes: . I'm sorry I didn't acknowdledge it then - I was happy to hear that you understood and shared my experiences and I'm glad I could be of some help. I also appreciate the reading tip. Unfortunately, however, between the two books I've already purchased (Classical Ballet Technique and the NYC Ballet Workout), my dance classes, and the gear to go with it, I've just about filled my dance budget for this fall - mind that I've got to save some money to go see live ballet as well :) .


I'm now taking two ballet classes (Mondays and Thursdays) and will even manage to squeeze in the two coming Tuesdays (to make up for 2 lessons that I missed due to signing up late for the Monday class :)) ). I've gotten to the point where I've learned enough to begin to grasp how much I actually have left to learn - infinity!!! :eek: Who would have thought "just jumping up and down" could require so much coordination, balance, body-consciousness and concentration :confused: ! I'm constantly loving it though and getting alot of good response from my teachers. I'm beginning to understand their corrections and improving as I go.


How are things going for you?

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