Ballet Benefits History Format of Ballet Class Vocabulary
Ballet • Benefits • Format of Class • History • Ballet Companies • Vocabulary
Benefits of Ballet - • Provides physical conditioning • Nurtures physical & mental discipline • Decodes a new nonverbal language • Teaches the vocabulary of classical ballet • Improves posture and grace • Educates so students can appreciate and support live performances
Format of Ballet Class • Barre – is where dancers learn and practice exercises that are components for other parts of class. It also provides support dancers need to acquire basic alignment and balance. Practicing at the barre allows dancers to integrate the mind and body to work as a whole. This is where dancers warm their muscles and prepare their body for dance class. • Center – is where dancers strengthen their barre exercises and connect them into steps without the assistance of the barre. Here dancers practice arm positions/movements, learn spatial directions and classical poses.
Format of Ballet Class (continuned) • Across the Floor – As dancers progress they began to understand and apply locomotor concepts which is called petit allegro (basic turns/small leaps) or grand allegro (advanced turns/large leaps). • Adagio - as class concludes dancers revisit the center to execute movements which allow the body to properly cool down.
History of Ballet • Ballet comes from the word “ballo” meaning to dance • The first performance of a ballet on stage “in theatres” was 1669 as a part of an opera. • King Louis XIV – made ballet a major portion of the entertainment for royal courts
History (continued) • King Louis received his name “Sun King” from the buckles on his shoes he wore during a performance during his first ballet at the age of 13 • King Louis was trained by Pierre Beauchamp who created the 5 positions of the feet and assisted in establishing the Academie De Royale.
BALLET COMPANIES Every ballet company has its own style and character. Most companies set up their own schools attached to their company, so that the dancers can learn the company’s particular style. Ballet companies establish traditions and exchange ideas. There is constant movement of dancers, guest artist and choreographers between companies each bringing a different interpretation or idea of a production. Paris Opera Ballet –One of the oldest companies developed from Acamemie Royale De Danse founded by Louis XIV in 1661. Marius Petipa was the Ballet Master in 1860. The Kirov Ballet – Founded 1783 in St. Petersburg, Russia. Marius Petipa produced classics such as The Sleeping Beauty, The Nutcracker for this company. The Bolshoi Ballet – Based at the Bolshoi Theatre in Moscow since 1856 which is famous for its dramatic, flamboyant style. They danced the very first performance of Swann Lake and Don Quixote.
Ballet Companies The Royal Ballet – Founded by Dame Ninette De Valois developed from the Sadler’s Wells Ballet school in London in 1956 and has two schools attached to it. American Ballet Theatre – Lucia Chase and Richard Chase formed this company which was originally called Ballet Theatre in 1939. Later became American Ballet Theatre based in New York. National Ballet of Canada – Based in Toronto this company was founded in 1951. Its first director, Celia Franca, was a former ballerina from Sadler’s Wells. Australia Ballet – a number of dancers from The Royal Ballet helped establish this company which was founded in 1962. The first director Peggy Van Praagh assisted Ninette De Valois at The Sadler’s Wells Royal Ballet. Dance Theatre of Harlem – Arthur Mitchell and Karel Shook founded this company to create more opportunities for African American ballet dancers. It began as a school and its first performance was at the Guggenheim Museum in New York in 1971. the company performs classical and new works.
VOCABULARY/DESCRIPTION • 5 Positions of the feet • Alignment • Demi Plie’- small bend of the knee • Tendu-to extend or stretch • Releve’- to rise • Balance-to maintain a position for a period of time • Alignment- the posture in ballet that includes a straight spine and aligned torso