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Ballet Talk for Dancers

lack of support


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I'm sure if you've read some of my posts I've had similar issues. And ballet can be expensive. I pay about $15-20 per class. And I try to go roughly 3x a week. That can add up pretty quickly. Then you have to buy the clothes and shoes when you start going alot because things don't last. There are ways to get around it though. If you want it bad enough you will find the money you need or ways to make it less expensive. My boyfriend plays hockey almost every night of the week. Before I went back to ballet I used to make fun of him because he acted as if he was going to be a pro hockey player at age 28. Then I started to realize that it was something he has done since he was a kid and something that he is so passionate about. If anything, I realized that I was jealous that I didn't have something as well. I also looked around at my other friends and their hobbies. Some of them were in bands, sang in a chior, or was in a bowling league. And me...well I didn't do squat! I tried going to the gym and that bored me. Then I tried yoga, and that bored me too. Then my friend took me to a pilates class and the teacher asked if I had ever done ballet because my movements were "balletic" and I made alot of mistakes that "ballet dancers" make. I told her that I took ballet for years as a child. And then it hit me....I had to go back to ballet. So my point is....hobbies are somewhat of a calling. Everyone has their "thing" and people who make fun of you or don't understand just don't realize that this is what you want to do, need to do, and love to do. And those are probably the same people that don't have anything to do themselves (like i was). And they are just jealous that you rather do something good for yourself then go to the bar on a thursday night. My boyfriend doesnt understand ballet and thinks its a little silly but he's happy that I have something to do that I love. And he doesn't mind the increased flexibility either! So who cares! Be proud of your hobby and do it for no one else but you. Maybe if you have an opportunity to perform and you can show everyone what you've been working on I'm sure their jaw will drop to the floor. Happy dancing!

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Top Posters In This Topic

  • cassy


  • Dance_Scholar_London


  • missvjc420


  • Laschwen


You guys are great :shrug:


i wish everyone was as open minded as you!!

im feeling a little better and more positive now. it is difficult fighting a backward struggle.

chinafish, it was good to hear your story, you know 100% how it feels :yucky:


im sure most of you posters have experienced this at times or still do, your opinions have helped me get things straight in my own mind - i dont feel guilty for enjoying ballet, it keeps me healthy, provides a challenge and is theraputic for me.


i cant imagine not dancing :wacko:


still not plucked up the courage to approach the subject again yet though am working on it. this time of year is always stressful, have been dropping a few hints :thumbsup:


thanks again, will keep posting


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I have nothing helpful to say here. But reading these posts did cause me to be exceedingly grateful to my husband and my two dancing children, all of whom have been nothing but supportive of my adult dance aspirations and schedule. I feel quite blessed at the moment.

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Hi Avalon,

glad to hear you are having a positive experience. Having people around you who appreciate and share your passion is a blessing. Not that we should all like and be the same cos that would get boring but you always have someone around to share stuff with, encourage, motivate, praise and give each other your honest opinion!


Cassy :thumbsup:

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I suppose I'm fortunate in that dancing has always been part of my life so everyone who knows me just accepts it. Certainly some of my work colleagues think I'm rather eccentric - but then I work in an industry where eccentricity is the norm rather than the exception!


Although I never danced professionally, I have always "needed" to dance and I believe that it is my dancing which has kept me young and fit.


I have come across people whose partners have for some bizarre reason not approved of thier dancing and have never understood it.


As a "pasttime", I don't consider dancing expensive - on average £5 a class and I'm certainly wearing leotards etc which are some 10 years old - beyond that the lycra does disintegrate :blushing: Soft shoes really should last a reasonable time - at 3 or 4 classes a week at least a term if not two! Pointe shoes are probably any dancer's greatest outlay but ..........


My other "obsession" or childhood "hobby" is riding. That is seriously expensive! livery fees for your horse at £100 a month minumum, feed, one or two lessons a week at £15 to £20 plus hire of a menage if you don't have one you can use, tack, vets bills, competition fees, horse transport............and the biggest thing of all - time! I sold my horse two years ago because of all these factors - I'm now less tired, see more of my partner and chose to buy a sports car which is considerably cheaper to run!

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That is true, other hobbies can be much more expensive. Many outsiders associate ballet with pain* (pointe work!!) and therefore dont understand why one does spend a certain amount on the torture of dance training.


*Helena Wulff explains in her book "Ballet Across Boarders" ballet as a culture of pain. This might be true to a certain extent.

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That's rather amusing since a friend at work with whom I dance was explaining to a non dancer the other day that in order to be a dancer one must enjoy pain!


Very true though. From a very young age, I learnt to distinguish between "good" pain and "bad" pain - i.e. knowing that you have worked, and the pain associated with injury!


As dancers it is just about beaten into us to push our bodies to their utmost limits and then go beyond that - a non dancer may find this bizarre. Normal people don't deliberately inflict pain upon themselves or see the point of pushing one's body to that extent.


Also, I think many non-dancers see dance as easy - particularly classical ballet since our training means that when we perfrom, we must make difficult things look effortless.

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The sub-chapter is entitled "Culture of Injury and Pain", p. 105. It is very interesting to read. I would classify it as easy academic reading. :-)

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Hi everyone

Lori, i think you have a very good way of explaining to non-dancers about dance, what it involves and why we do it :thumbsup:


dance scholar, i will be looking up that book today, sounds intresting :D


I have class toninght, so will see how things go. Its sad that i leave class on a high then get home, end up feeling fustrated :sweating:

I dont feel guilty for doing something i love, or spending money on it but after so many disagreements about the whole situation, you sometimes doubt yourself.

Well i will post after class, might be late because i have tae kwon do straight after ballet!!! :)



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I've been watching this thread, and like Avalon, felt I didn't have much to add; the Guy at my house pops up the moment my key rattles in the lock to see me demonstrate any cool combinations (he doesn't give a damn about ballet either--just likes the leo's). I would guess he's not crazy about the hours I spend at ballet, the hours he spends rubbing my calf muscles or the hours he has to watch ballet on t.v., but I do know that we keep our finances very separate (my choice, not his, because I'm a broke grad student in the humanities and he's a computer geek).


My parents are not an issue and even at work, where they expect me to suffer and bleed and work myself to death for a pittance, after five years they've come to understand "if it's after five she don't show up: ballet class."


If it's NOT the money I would suggest (not to get too X rated) coming home and stripping off the tights to flop down and say, "Whew, I'm so smelly. Just gimme a minute to take a shower. Miss/Mr X gave a killer petite allegro..." and then demonstrate as you are. That'd reconcile anybody!

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dido -


Great post! I completely forgot to mention that my husband as well likes the leotards. If things are a little tense around the house for whatever reason, I make sure I come home from class in that one really strappy Capezio that he especially likes and all is forgiven...


Cassy -


Do run dido's experiment and let us know the results. We could be on to something significant here...

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thanks dido and avalon,

things have been a bit easier lately, my classes are going great too :yucky:


i still think its also a security thing, i mean because im quite independant and confident (usually) about dancing - he may see that as a threat! Some of my friends think that too, money does come into it though.


For example january i took my wages at the beginning of the month instead of the end, to pay OUR bills because his wages were late, then when i took money for class he complained that if we dont have money - we dont have!

So i argued that i had put all my months wages into paying bills to help out, that i had worked to earn that money and i would rather use my personnel allowance to pay for class above everything else, as it means so much to me.


I find it strange that he doesnt understand this as he practises martial arts and when we first met he was training every day sometimes three times a day. I think he was priveleged to have working hours that were flexible and a friend who was the instructor. He never misses class so why doesnt he understand, i ask this but get no answer except - too expensive.

Can you put a price on your health and happiness? :yucky:


Anyway sorry for the long explanation :pinch:

I have class tommorow and will make more effort when i get home :wink:


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I love that idea dsl, i think he would appreciate ballet a lot more and gain respect for it to. Sadly its just not possible, he works 6-5 mon-fri and teaches martial arts every single day, not to mention gradings and club events and cleaning the dojo!!! :yucky:


It would be very intresting, i think like alot of people, ignorance comes into play, people dont really understand the dedication, passion and hard work that goes into making a great dancer, if you want to be good, you have to work hard, if you want to be better you have to work harder, type of thing. Plus great dancers have the art of making ballet, in particular look so easy, effortless and graceful.


I think he would find it difficult to be graceful :yucky:


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Guest dance4joy

The thing I keep getting from everyone (family, husband, friends) is "why bother at your age?" And let me clarify here, I'm NOT exactly ancient. . .I'm only 24. But people keep telling me that I'm too old to dance professionally, especially considering it will probably be a few more years before I'm even good enough to consider it. So in the meantime everyone thinks I'm just wasting my time, energy and money chasing a silly dream. :)

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