There is no doubt in my heart that any adult ballerina who designs sweaters with ‘Will plié for pizza’ should be a friend of mine – or at least someone who I’d like to endlessly watch ballet clips on YouTube with and have conversations about ballet till deep in the night. Min from the ballet clothing brand Cloud & Victory proves that humor and ballet can go hand in hand: Roberto Bolle and his shirtless endeavors can definitely attest to that.
Why is it that ballet attracts so many people that tend to strive for perfection? People that would rather dance solely in brand new pointe shoes, than admit that they are pushing themselves too hard? People that like the feeling of totally immersing themselves into mastering a skill that is soo difficult, that there is always something to work on or worry about?
She dances just as gracefully in Giselle as she does in ballets from Duato, she loves the repetitive movements at the barre (but she was lazy and didn’t like ballet much when she first started to dance) and she loves to bake cupcakes in the shape of toi toi toi’s: Patricia Zhou is the ballerina every adult dancer wishes to be (at least I know I would).
Once I am in a dance flow, I want to take class every day, do my strengthening exercises, roll my muscles and even stretch regularly while using torture devices. I do this religiously, until the day that life happens, and this thing that I am trying to get my body to do seems like an unattainable and very pointless ideal.
After restarting ballet I had a lot of uncomfortable moments in class. I often felt like a huge clumsy mess after doing all these exercises that was so full of new – and yet old – steps that my brain and body felt overwhelmed. There is a right way and a wrong way to every single step and move, there are so many rules and so many things to think about: turn out your thighs, pull up your knees, tuck in you stomach, pull down your shoulders, relax your neck, close your ribs, lift your upper body, and smile while doing so.
The internet is my friend, I love ballet and I like doing research… If you add these three components and mix them together, it adds up to a lot (a lot a lot) of ballet themed searches on the internet.
Throughout most of my life, I’ve always been good at finding balance. Not only in ballet class – I’m getting better and better at balancing passes and attitudes – but also in balancing out things in my life.
Have you ever seen a ballerina doing push-ups in her tutu with one leg in coupé, or watched a dancer doing tours a la seconde while turning his head, hitting five different spots while he turns? No? Well, before I started to follow ABT principal Daniil Simkin’s Instagram account, I hadn’t either.
It is amazing what you can put in a video clip that lasts only 15 seconds: dazzling turns, sky-high jumps and almost frightening fouettés. It’s not often that a day goes by when I don’t watch at least one ballet clip on my Instagram account. But there are so many dancers sharing their moves with the world, it is hard to keep track. Who to follow, that is the question.