So I've always had a bit of an obsession with ballet, even though I never actually took any kind of dance lessons myself. Oh wait, I took K-Pop dance classes for a couple of months last summer, but I'm guessing they're pretty different from classical ballet. Just a little.
Ballet is incredibly beautiful, graceful, inspiring, otherworldly, magical...and the dancers looks so light, like they're floating and flying...all of their hard work and effort is hidden from the audience. It's amazing to watch and I adore it.
Here are two ballet related tid bits of awesomeness that I have been enjoying lately.
First up, the TV show 'Bunheads' by the creator of 'Gilmore Girls'. Ballet isn't really as important as the witty dialogue and character development here but I still like to soak up every bit of dancing that comes up. It's interesting to see what the girls go through and Fanny, always artistically dressed, is a charismatic, eccentric, and sufficiently terrifying instructor.
Next, a book I just finished reading by the same name (that's 'Bunheads' in case you've forgotten) by Sophie Flack, who was a professional ballet dancer herself (for New York City Ballet) for nine years. In some ways the book is fluffy YA fiction (not that all YA fiction is fluffy!!), but mostly it provides a revealing look behind the scenes of professional ballet - and that is fascinating! It follows the story of a nineteen year old girl who dances in the Corps of the Manhattan Ballet and shows what it's like to devote your entire life to dance. Her whole world exists inside one windowless building, but this in no way limits the emotional ups and downs that she goes through while competing for roles and figuring out what kind of life she wants to live. There are lots of interesting details about what it's really like to be a professional dancer and that was definitely the highlight for me. That they start at 10.30am and finish at 11pm is just the beginning...eek! There are also multiple mentions of words such as 'yogurt', 'banana', 'bunion', and 'he rolled out his calf muscle on a tennis ball'.
Now that I've finished watching the show and reading the book, I'm not sure where to get my next ballet fix. A few years ago I bought the New York City Ballet exercise DVD so maybe I'll go back to doing that and pretend that I'm graceful and flexible as I waddle around the room and barely manage to touch my toes.
Hooray for ballet! :-)