Sunday, January 20, 2019

This week was kind of chaotic, but I still managed to join both dancing lessons.

After arriving at class Lyda en I started talking about Sylvie Guillem, a very talented ballerina. Lyda showed me some of her dances on youtube. Sylvie started at Paris Opera Ballet at the age of 19 in 1984 and was a protégé of Rudolf Nureyev. An exceptional ballerina, she has almost unbelievable fluidness in her movements and she is so flexible. She clearly defined a new era in dancing.

Lyda asked me if I wouldn’t mind her sharing my blog address with a couple of ballet schools abroad. I don’t mind, I want to share my journey in ballet, that’s the main reason I started this blog! And knowing that people from abroad are reading this, gives me more reason to put more effort into writing English correctly.

Ballet is much about body control. The conscious approach to every movement is essential to classical ballet. That’s why ballet attracts me, besides its artistic and athletic features. I consider it as a form of mindfulness.

I learned that strong and flexible feet are necessary if you want to enhance your dancing skills. So last Monday Lyda gave us a more detailed anatomical outline about the foot.
She told us about the arch, the curve under the foot, between the heel and forefoot. And about the instep, the bony structure on top of the foot. Ballet favors a foot with a high arch and a high instep. Plantar flexion of your foot lifts the heel and points the toes. 
This provides more momentum to jump higher from the diverse foot positions.
Holding your balance when standing on your forefoot (relevé) is another example of having strong and flexible feet. And a high relevé (the maximal range of motion) depends on the bony structure in the joint of your big toe.
So your feet need to be trained.

We start the lesson by doing some exercises at the barre. It starts with placement, with aplomb as the foundation. Soon we move on with a variation of the plié. Then tendu, followed by ronds de jambe, with special attention to flexing and stretching the feet
Later on, she tells us to move to the center of the floor.

The use of French words is very common in the world of ballet, think of words like pliétendu, jetéronds de jambe. Those words imply carefully defined movements. These movements are there to be mastered. And when they are combined, the variety of dance exercises is infinite. 

Learning the basics of a new movement can be quite hard. I easily seem to forget the words and the combinations of the exercises. I really have to put more effort into staying more focused. Otherwise, I ‘ll be more like a poet, a dreamer with careful thoughts about ballet. Instead of being a beginner trying hard to become a dancer.
I need more training and I have to put more dedication to my training
I want to face and overcome that daily struggle to internalize those movements, to develop elasticity in my ligaments and stronger muscles. To become more proficient….. 

But it’s not easy.

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