On Your Toes

Today in 1581, the first ballet was performed in Paris. It had been commissioned by Catherine De Medici  and was called “Ballet Comique de la Reine”.  I love ballet, and so do our children. Both studied dance for many years.

The only ballets that  I have seen in live performance were by the Winnipeg Ballet, which is a very fine company.  We saw them perform Giselle and The Firebird.  We sometimes saw dancers from the company wandering the halls of our psychology department as they went to appointments to manage their eating disorders with one of our professors, an unfortunate side effect for some dancers.

What is your favorite ballet? Tell about your experiences with dance.



24 thoughts on “On Your Toes”

  1. I have seen Swan Lake twice. And I was lucky enough years ago to see Baryshnikov dance at Northrup although it was just selected pieces it wasn’t an actual ballet. But based on the fact that I watch it over and over and own several versions of it, I would have to say The Nutcracker is my favorite ballet.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. I think I saw the same show. I was in college at U of MN taking dance and theatre and I totally splurged on tickets to see Baryshnikov dance as well. I think he also did some Twyla Tharp stuff in the show I saw, plus I saw Swan Lake, I believe. Or was it the Les Ballets de Trockadero (guys in drag dancing which was amazing if you’ve never seen grown men in toe shoes and tutus — hilarious) version of Swan Lake.

      Liked by 3 people

      1. I love to think that we were both at the same performance. I was up in the nosebleed section because this was such a lavish expenditure for me back then. It was also a lot of fun when I discovered that I had been sitting behind Donna at the last late great morning show over in Saint Paul

        Liked by 1 person

  2. I love dance, not just ballet, but dance as an art form and as a cultural expression of the times. I’m intrigued by how cultural differences are expressed through dance. Dance has been a vital part of my life since I was a little girl. Everything from traditional Danish folk dances, to classical ballroom dances, and during my teens and early adulthood, everything from the jitterbug, to swing, the cha-cha, and rock’n roll and the twist. Later on I was introduced to folk dances from many different cultures, and as BiR can attest, they are all a lot of fun.

    Don’t know that I have favorite ballet, I’ve seen so many that I really enjoyed. Giselle is lovely, as is the Stone Flower. The Nutcracker is a perennial favorite during the Christmas season, but I think Swan Lake is hard to beat. The Swan Lake music is so compelling that it’s almost impossible to sit still when it’s playing. I must have seen Swan Lake at least five times, and I just never tire of it.

    But dance is so much more than ballet. One of the features that I enjoyed the most at the Festival of Nations was the dance performances of the various nationalities.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. I don’t have a favorite Ballet.
    I’ve lit a lot of dance shows, both modern and ballet. There’s a whole separate design concept for dance; lots of side light to emphasize the body and movement rather than just faces.
    On occasion, in the booth with the directors as we design and program lighting I have become so enthralled watching the dancers onstage that I forget what I’m doing. It’s pretty cool when that happens.

    I have a group that comes through often called ‘Tippi Toes’. I’m sure I’ve mentioned them before. It’s 2 yr olds through about 10 yr olds and it’s all very low key and just getting kids interested in dancing. It’s not unusual that we’ll hold a dance for a potty break or for Mom or dad to come get a crying child. But it’s such a positive experience for them and such a good way to get them interested.

    Liked by 3 people

      1. My curiosity drove me to YouTube to watch some of the other clips of the Chinese Circus doing Swan Lake. It’s rather amazing. And I’ve never been to a ballet where the acrobatic moves in the finale are such that they have to have a spotter on stage.

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        1. I have seen a couple of these Chinese performances live, and they are amazing. Their artistry, paired with strength and athletic skill and talent, just blows you away.

          Liked by 2 people

  4. I’ve seen many dance performances – was fortunate to live in both San Francisco and NYC, and have seen everything from Nutcracker to the Joffrey doing Twyla Tharp. Thought I’ve only seen it on a screen, my favorite ballet is Agnes Demille’s Rodeo.

    I found a little folk dance class in 1978, found I was good at it (despite thinking I was basically clumsy after enduing High School PE). I started going to a large group at the U of M, was totally hooked by the strange rhythms and melodies, and have never looked back.

    So besides ballet, I love to watch all kinds of ethnic dance – the Duquesne Univ. Tamburitzans, for one, and the Twin Cities are particularly rich with Ethnic Dance Theater, Ragamala (east Indian), Mu Daiko (taiko drumming – with dancing, sometimes done at a little Asian festival on Lake Como in St. Paul).

    OT: Cataract removal went well – just have to keep this “patch” on rest of today and a week of overnights.

    Liked by 3 people

  5. Welcome Ahundrad Thousands
    Dedications rage, Remember a single message choir beat. English Peace Version
    Good lines
    Writing dirty & challenging


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