Could you imagine your life without dancing? That’s right, no, because this is not surprising, since, from the very appearance of humanity, dances played one of the key roles in communication, along with sounds and gestures. The first dances of people were quick — the main goal was to convey this or that atmosphere, events that a person happened to experience or see.
History of Ballet
The first country, the homeland where ballet appeared, was France. It was the French choreographers who formed the basis of ballet as we know it today.
In the 16th century, ballet gained new popularity thanks to the books: The Dancer and Orchestography. They became the first step in the difficult development of ballet as a world-famous dance style and brought dance technique, movement and music together.
In 1661 in France, the Royal Academy of Dance was founded. After the 16th century, ballet developed rapidly, bringing new types of costumes, special pointe shoes, and styles so that ballet, with its gracefulness, could keep up with the times. By the way, the first ballet dancers danced on bare toes, keeping fantastic balance and grace.
Contemporary ballet is the result of centuries of labor, innovation, ups, and downs. For some, ballet is just a dance and a way of self-expression, for others — it is a whole life.
Popular Ballet Styles
Thus, there are the following types of ballet performances — romantic ballet, classical ballet, neoclassical ballet, modern or contemporary ballet. Each ballet performance is charming in its way. Romantic ballet consists of two acts: in the light of day and the light of night. Classical ballet has a system of certain forms and movements. In classical ballet, dancers always tell a story through dance. Classical multi-act ballet is traditionally devoted to myths, fairy tales, and historical themes. Neoclassical ballet has replaced the usual, time-tested classics. This style is notable for its swiftness and speed. Contemporary ballet was founded by American choreographers, and, first of all, it is an experiment in dance.
When to start learning ballet
It is better to start practicing dance directly from the age of 7. Speaking about professional ballet, this is 10 years. Can you start training only as a child? There are two answers to this question:
- YES — if you plan to conquer the professional stage and dance in the best theaters in the world;
- NO — if you just want to gain deep knowledge in the field of ballet, feel it and achieve that very lightness and grace. As you already understood, it all depends on the goal. Amateurs do not have such strict requirements as professionals.
Choosing a ballet school
It is not an easy question and in the enormous variety of private dance schools and studios.
Let’s start with the equipment of the hall. The ballet hall should be spacious, light, and well ventilated. The ballet equipment and full-length mirrors are a must! The floor is a polished board or special stage linoleum for choreography! It is strictly forbidden to practice classical dance on a parquet or laminate! Simply put, the floor should not be slippery — this leads to injuries.
Now it is necessary to say about the teaching methodology. The entire world’s classical ballet adheres to only one method — developed by A. Ya. Vaganova at the beginning of the 20th century. Professional educational institutions use this method.
Clothing and equipment needed for ballet
Ballet clothing and costumes, and ballet shoes
An integral part of every ballerina’s wardrobe is soft ballet training equipment, shoes and pointe shoes. Often, ballet dancers wear ballet leotards in class and rehearsal, as tight, form-fitting clothing is best for dancing. Tutus are worn only for performances and concerts.
Ballet training equipment
- Ballet training Barre
They differ in materials, dimensions, design, and installation methods. There are two main types of barres.
- Stationary ballet barre. It attaches securely to the wall or floor. The traditional choice for specialized schools and studios, where classes constantly take place.
- Mobile ballet barre. It can be quickly disassembled and moved to another location. Suitable for occasional workouts at home and in hobby groups.
Also, the choreographic barre can be single-row and double-row for students of different ages.
- Turn boards
It is a special board for practicing rotation. It helps to coordinate the correct position of the hands, maintain balance and train the vestibular apparatus. Also, you can make the pirouettes more beautiful and graceful.
It is made of environmentally-friendly EVA and nylon, has a smooth surface, strong and elastic structure, so it is impossible to break it during training. You can use it at home and in the hall.
How to Get Better at Ballet
To become a successful ballerina, you need to be both physically and mentally strong person.
Natural diligence, perseverance, and focus on success play a huge role. It is necessary, in addition to dancing qualities, to develop leadership. You can beat off competitors with charisma and artistry. Also, throughout the entire time, you need to follow the strictest diet.
It will be helpful to develop strength of mind since there are both thorns and stars on the professional path. You’d better prepare for everything, including injuries. If you believe and work hard, then success is sure to come. A talented artist will have the opportunity to work in the best troupes of famous theaters, perform on tour around the world and become a media personality.