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Ballet Talk for Dancers

arabesque


Guest Tyraney

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Guest Tyraney

each year, the students at the studio i attend have their individual pictures taken. for my picture this year, i want to do an arabesque. it is my last year, and i want the pose to be rather difficult. problem is, is that i have a difficult time balancing in an arabesque en pointe. i still have three months to perfect it, and i can do them alright, but since it is going to be a picture, i want my technique to look perfict. my question is, do you have any advice on how to balance better, and any technique problems i should look out for? any other advice would also be appreciated. thank you!!

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  • Administrators

Jenny, it really is hard to get a good arabesque photo, as most of us know from having to do them for the students auditioning for the summer programs which require a first arabesque shot. Of course the first requirement is to "own" a good arabesque! smile.gif Assuming that you have that, then you need a very good photographer, not necessarily a professional, but one with an eye and who knows ballet so that he/she knows exactly the timing and when to press the button. Next, you need a teacher or another very advanced dancer there to see that you are indeed hitting your best arabesque. It will probably take a lot of trys to get it right. You should be willing, for this kind of photo, to take at least a couple of rolls of film. I have also found it far easier to catch the top of the balance if the dancer takes the pose from a relevé rather than a piqué action. It helps with the timing for the photographer. Perfecting your arabesque is your, and your teacher's, first job of course!

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Guest toedancer23

I just finished having my first arabesque photos taken, and I have a hint, if it's OK.

 

My teacher helped me to make any corrections to my technique and my Mom took the photos. (Lucky for me she is a good photographer and has good timing.)

 

What my teacher suggested (and seemed to work well) is that she would hold my hand extended in front (and correct me if anything wasn't placed properly) while I went on pointe and took an arabesque. Then she would let go and quickly back off out of the photo and I would extend fully.

 

How did the pictures turn out? Well, fairly well. I guess I am a perfectionist and can only focus on the negative I see in all the photos. Like: I wish my leg were higher, or, my hand is doing something funny. rolleyes.gif

 

But they are really not bad.

smile.gif

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Guest Tyraney

haha!! now i am nervious!! i guess i will have to really work on my balancing before the shoot, because i am sure that they are not going to want to waiste alot of time on just one student. hm... if i cannot get it, perhaps i will do something a bit simpler. thank you for the tips!!!

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I was wondering if auditioners have any problem with photos taken with a digital camera. The one we used last year had poorer quality than regular film and I have heard of photos being "doctored" to make a foot look better or a leg higher.

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That's okay, rymom, it's a good question and can be addressed here. We actually have discussed this before, but I don't remember where it was. I would not have a problem with the quality of the photo as long as I can see the dancer clearly, HOWEVER, I would have a HUGE problem with anything that has been doctored! eek.gif While we would probably be able to notice that rather quickly in the audition, if there is not a huge number of students in the class, I would still be most upset by noting that and would then certainly have to consider not accepting digital photos. And certainly not accepting that dancer!

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I too did my daughters' pictures. A couple of years ago, I spend a couple hundred dollars on Professional pictures, trying to get that perfect arabesque.It was a waste. The last 2 years I have did them myself and learned that they aren't looking for a perfect picture, and that not having aperfect picture is not going to make or break your audition.

I am actually starting to get pretty good at catching the arabesque at the right momnet. I did one roll of film, and I picked one out and low and behold it was acceptable to my daughter also. She is always looking for perfection, one always has a finger out of place, foot not turned out enough,or a bad facial expression.I think we got lucky this year. Now I need to do my other darling daughter....she's even picky-er!

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