How ballet has changed

If there is one thing I will never dislike, it’s probably ballet. But how things have changed! Ballet used to be more about spirit and emotions (yep, emotions!) and less about the perfect turnout or 32 fouettes. (See Swan Lake) To show how different things have become, I offer you two viedo’s: the first one is Tamara Toumanova dancing the solo from Don Quichote. The second one is lina Somova doing the same. The same? Not really. Tell me, which one do you like the most?

Also check out this post on the same subject! It’s like an extended version of this one.

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  1. I am at work so such examples of culture and perfection are unavailable to me.

    • I expect a good analysis from you when you’re at home.

      • The only thing I could really analyse between the two was the long spinny bit at the end.

        In the first clip it was much smoother and occasionally you could almost kid yourself that she wasn’t putting her foot down.

        Second one was amateur footage at a different angle. The dancer looks a bit skinny and her legs looked like long fingers that needed an extra knuckle. When she kicked her leg out it wasn’t as smooth and she stumbled a couple of times.

      • I’m already impressed that a male with no knowledge of ballet (I suppose…) gives me such analysis! Well said, Michael. Alina really kicks her leg out. Of course it’s great that you’re able to do these turns, but I agree with you.

  2. so true.. ballet is probably the one true love of my life (which is only a wee bit sad.. :D).. there’s something I like about each, but I think I like Alina a tad more, which is probably only because I sort of grew up with those kind of performances instead of the “old” ones..

    • Love for ballet seems like something you get when you’re born and you’re unable to lose it.
      Alina’s abilities are very impressive, but somehow I find them too much. Dancers may seem human too… Still, she has a great technique and I have a lot of respect for that too!

  3. Lisa

     /  February 20, 2012

    The first one feels real, somehow. Like this person spontaneously decided to dance because she was full of emotions. The second one seems very mechanical and perfect, like a little wind up toy. Both are enjoyable to watch but the first one has more life in it.

    • That is what I wanted to hear ;).
      I believe that ballet shouldn’t be too much about perfection. Due to that I like the first one more. I love the ‘explosiveness’ of her Kitri, because after all, Kitri is quite explosive. She’s not in controll, she’s just passion and movement.

  4. Yeah I agree with my mom. I think the first one feels more real, whereas the second one seemed like she was just aiming for applause. I could watch pirouettes all day though! I wish I could do them!

    • Your mom is a wise woman!
      Those pirouettes, I know… I can do a few but not on point. I mean, they really turn on their toes. That is even more difficult than you might imagine… Do not try this at home :).

  5. My Movie Weekend was based on your post:

    Strictly Ballroom
    Billy Elliot
    Mao’s Last Dancer
    Black Swan

    and, I tagged you in post!

  6. They way I look at it, the second one seems to be counting off her steps until she’s done,

  7. The same thing has happened in ice skating. Look at videos of Oksana Bauil from 1994 and compare them to Nancy Kerrigan. Oksana won gold for a reason – the beauty of her artistry was incredible. But later she grew a lot (she was only 16 when she won) and it threw off her balance and her jumps. But that’s not what ice skating should be about, in my opinion. She was a ballet dancer on ice, and when you saw her skate it took your breath away, far more than anybody jumping up and down on the ice.

    • Both ice skating and ballet have become too technical. I mean, technique is great, but everyone agrees on the fact that it should be above all graceful and touching and stuff. Technique is but a way to show the nuances for me.
      A sad, sad thing. *sigh*

  8. Toumanova is dancing as my Mom would say with feelings 🙂 Plz check out my latest post about Tamara:

    Thank you

  9. Hmm it seems like your blog ate my first comment
    (it was super long) so I guess I’ll just sum it up what I
    wrote and say, I’m thoroughly enjoying your blog. I as well am an aspiring
    blog writer but I’m still new to everything. Do you have any
    points for first-time blog writers? I’d certainly appreciate it.

  1. Dance Day 6 : What has changed in ballet? | No Blog Intended

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