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Ballet Talk for Dancers

grand battement derriere

je danse dans ma tete

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The teacher makes us do grand battement derriere a lot to help us with our arabesques. My hips twist when I do grand battement to the back (my leg wants to go more to the side), but my hips are straight when I do grand battement to the front and side. What am I doing wrong? This only happens away from the barre. At the barre I can do the ones to the back just fine. Are you allowed to lean forward a bit in grand battement to the back, or do you have to keep perfectly upright?


I see one girl in the class (I think she has a bit more experience than most of us beginners) lean a bit. Her leg goes high and the teacher sees her and doesn't correct her so I assume she is not making a mistake?





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Laura, one does not "lean" for arabesque or grand battement derrière, but you do move your body weight forward and upward against the leg going backward and upward. Back is very different from front and side. It is not possible to stay totally vertical and also not open the hip of the working leg a bit, as there is something in the way....the gluteus maximus! :) The leg must be behind you, not to the side, but, the hip can open in order to rotate the leg. By moving the body weight forward and up over the supporting leg, you allow the back leg to lift with some rotation. :(

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Thanks Ms. Leigh. I just printed off your answer, as I find it to be very helpful! Now if only I can memorize it and apply it to my work in class!



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