Young girls and women symbolize femininity with being a ballerina. Kelso comments that in the shadows of the spotlight lurks an abusive world of eating disorders, verbal harassment, fierce competition, injuries, fatigued, and malnourished dancers (Kelso, 2003). In today’s world of ballet, dancers suffer from always being in pain, worrying their body image is not the right look they need to have to get lead roles resulting in the development of eating disorders, and male ballet dancers are stereotyped as being homosexual when most of the male dancers are in fact heterosexual.
“Pain speaks a language almost anyone can understand” (Aalten, 2005). However many ballet dancers are worried about their career especially if he or she has an injury; which is the norm of thinking in the culture of ballet. But there are some rare cases, that dancers use their injuries and take away a positive experience. Which heightens his or her sense of awareness to their body and gives them the opportunity to learn the possibilities and limitations of what they can or cannot do physically.
Dancers deal with pain or an injury differently than most people because they defy the principles of the human design and have the urge to prove themselves to the company that hires them. One would think that a profession like ballet, dancers would take care of their bodies (instrument for their profession) but with the demands of the director and choreographers, dancers must ignore what their bodies are telling them and go on with the show.
This writer’s brother danced for 16 years and he mostly did ballet. One time when he was practicing for a show he lifted his partner and she twisted wrong and he got a hernia in his groin area. He danced on it for the longe...
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...tly consists of long limbs, a skeletal frame, which accentuates the collarbones and length of the neck, as well as absence of breasts and hips”( Kelso, 2003).
Aalten, A. (2005). In the presence of the body: Theorizing training, injuries and pain in ballet. Dance Research Journal, 37(2), 55-72. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/20444641
Daly, A. (1989). To dance is "female" dance, sex and gender: Signs of identity, dominance, defiance, and desire. TDR, 33(4), 23-27. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/1145961
Kelso, P. T. (2003). Behind the curtain: The body, control, and ballet. Edwardsville Journal of Sociology, 3(2). Retrieved from http://www.siue.edu/sociology/EJS/v32kelso.htm
Ramsay, B. (2000). Dance theory, sociology, and aesthetics. Dance Research Journal, 32(1), 125-131. Retrieved from http://www.jstor.org/stable/1478286
I considered myself a performer, and after years training as a classical ballerina I expanded into stunting and tumbling. While on tour, I developed friendships and bonds with dancers strengthened by a mutual love for dance, a commonality over the pain our bodies endured daily, and conversations on bruised and broken toes.
Tallchief, M., & Kaplan, L. (1997). Chapter 1. Maria Tallchief: America's prima ballerina (pp. 4-18). New York: Henry Holt.
The typical idea of a dancer is that they are tall, slender, full of energy, and lucky because they dance with all of the “stars”. Much of this is true, however, what many people do not think of are the many hardships that a dancer goes through in order to achieve their high status in the dance world. It takes much hard work and determination along with good direction to become a dancer. However, nothing good comes without a price. Dancers often times have many pressures put on them which can lead to physical and emotional damages. These damages occur through the pressures from the media, parents, teammates, and the stereotype that society has placed on dancers.
By universal definition, "sport" is listed as "an activity involving physical exertion and skill that is governed by a set of rules or customs and often undertaken competitively." Football, basketball, baseball, soccer and other primary activities have always been concretely defined as sports in society. However, one of the most physically demanding activities is constantly forgotten when it comes to the realm of sports- dance. Dance requires a tremendous amount of training and creates an aura of competition in which people compete to be the best, win, and take home the trophy- just like in traditionally accepted sports. These sports, however, do not possess an element of psychological health threats that some competitive dancers unfortunately must account for due to the emphasis placed on physical appearance.
Jonas, Gerald. Dancing: The Pleasure, Power, and Art of Movement. New York: Abrams, 1992. Print.
Learning about Dance: Dance as an Art Form and Entertainment provides visions into the many features of dance and inspires scholars to keep an open mind and think critically about the stimulating, bold, ever-changing and active world of dance. Learning about Dance is particularly useful for those who do not have a wide and diverse dance contextual, such as students in a preliminary level or survey dance course. This book consists of twelve chapters. Chapter one dance as an art form focuses on the basic structures of dance. Dance is displayed through the human body, it has the control to communicate and induce reactions. Dance can be found in many different places, it enables the participants and seekers to touch and knowledge the joy of movement. Dance is discovered as being one of the oldest art forms worldwide. Dance existed in early cultures was recognized in a sequence of rock paintings portrayed dance. Since this discovery of rock paintings, several other forms of art have been found that depict dance. People used rituals in order to worship the gods and believed that the rituals held magical and spiritual powers. During the ancient period civilizations sentient decisions began to be made with regard to dance. Other periods that had an impact on dance were the medieval period, the renaissance period, and the contemporary period. Chapter two the choreographer, the choreographer is a person who comes up with the movements created into a dance routine. The choreographer expresses themselves through choreography because this is their way of communicating with the audience. In order to be a choreographer you must have a passion for dance. Each choreographer has their own approaches and ways of making up a routine. Choreographers ...
Ballet has been an art form since the late fifteenth century, but society did not truly see the impact of ballet until the nineteenth century. Modern day thinkers possess the idea that ballet began with tutus and pointe shoes, but it wasn’t until the nineteenth century that this opinion was observed. Ballet has come a long way. It has survived the turmoil of many wars and has changed itself by accepting new ideas and impressing the audience with its unique stylistic views.
I would like to look closely at the article written by Elias et al., 2008. What I found worthy of note is the prevalence and the incidence of stress fractures commonly seen in ballet dancers (Smith, et al., 2015). Growing up, I have enjoyed dancing and even entered local and national competitions. Of all the dances that I have been partial to, ballet was never my cup of tea. I enjoy watching ladies dancing gracefully en pointe but if I would be tasked to perform the said dance, I would opt out straight away. Training in ballet is a rigorous practice. The gracefulness is not without a physical cost. So, I would just slip back as a spectator on this one.
Humans have expressed thoughts and emotions through movement long before the development of speech. However, the origins of ballet can be traced back specifically to the Renaissance period and the early court dances in France and Italy. Any celebratory occasion, such as the birth of an heir or an influential marriage would call for social court dancing. All ladies and gentlemen of the court learned these rather intricate dances as part of their grooming for society. Around the 1400s, as the court dances became more detailed and complicated, it became necessary to formally codify these dances to maintain consistency. Special dance instructors or “Ballet Masters” began to appear. These men were highly revered and considered to be the finest dance teachers. They also served as dance makers or choreographers, creating dances that were used throughout Europe. King Louis XIV had a profound influence on the progression of ballet. Not only was he an avid supporter of dance, he was also a beloved performer. In fact, King Louis XIV is commonly referred to as the Sun King, a name he received after appearing ornately adorned in gold as Apollo, god of the sun, in Le Ballet de la Nuit (The Ballet of the Night). Many other highly respected dancers include: Giovanni Battista Lulli, Vaslav Nijinsky, George Balanchine, Vladimir Malakhov, and many more, all being men. It wasn’t until the early 20th century where women were finally respected in the dance world. Women like Martha Graham, Angela Isadora Duncan, Mary Wigman, Gret Palucca, Harald Kreutzberg, Yvonne Georgi, and Twyla Tharp were the first dancers and choreographers who began to create a reputation for women that changed the image of dance all over the world. Today, one renounced Africa...
Surely no one could have known that the daughter of the dark-haired usher at the Mariinsky Theatre would acquire the title of Ballerina in 1915, become the creator of one of the most-practiced standards of ballet instruction, and be remembered as one of the ballet world’s most beloved instructors and choreographers. Agrippina Vaganova’s revolutionary technique introduced a certain athleticism to ballet, which, rather than emphasizing the individuality of the parts of the body, trained the body into one unit. Consequently, the parts of the body depended on the whole in order to move and function. Her legacy is a well-known and revered one in the ballet world.
Three hundred years ago, ballet was introduced to Russia for the first time by the Czarita's Elizabeth and Anna. Their intention was court entertainment, but little did they know they made a move that would change the face of classical ballet forever. Although ballet originated in Italy and France, Russia certainly gets credit for stylizing and perfecting the art form. From opening the Imperial Ballet School to the formation of the Vaganova technique, from the splendor of Anna Pavlova to the defection of Mikhail Baryshnikov and Rudolf Nureyev, Russian ballet’s past has been a rollercoaster. In the aftermath of the January 17, 2013 acid attack on the Bolshoi artistic director, Sergei Filin, the ballet world is under intense scrutiny of what really goes on behind closed doors. To fully understand why all this controversy is swirling around a single art form based on grace, poise, and performance, we will need to understand the root of the issue. The country of Russia.
Li’s passion for ballet shows on and off stage through his arabesques, flexibility, fouettés, grande jeté and pirouettes that were nothing less than perfection. I understood that becoming a dancer requires commitment, passion and having a great memory as there’s many moves, routines and ballet terms that you need to learn. When I was performing on stage, I felt free and that I could own the stage as it felt like it was my second home. I also felt complete within myself just as Li felt. To perform on stage, you need to be light and graceful along with connecting to the music using precise steps, poses and formal gestures. The film used dance, music, scenery, and costumes to portray a story characterised by Li’s dance. Classical ballet dancers require the utmost grace and I’ve found that you also need a tremendous level of concentration and memory. This portrays when his choreographer Ben Stevenson asked Li Cunxin to replace the main male role due to an injury on the day of the performance to memorise new dances and perform them in front of an enormous crowd. Many of my performances have been in a group where we all need to be in sync and work together. This film highlighted that in order to become a professional ballet dancer, you have to prepare to work extremely hard no matter how gruelling the schedule is in order to