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The History Of Ballet Essay

1697 words - 7 pages

By. Krista Cornelius
Many young girls grow up taking ballet class, but there is a lot more to ballet than just little girls running around in tutus. Many people think that ballet is boring or isn’t their thing but there are many roles that go into putting on a ballet. A lot of work goes into doing a ballet. There are many famous ballets that without the story, the ballet wouldn’t be as interesting. There were many influential dancers and choreographers in ballet. There are many basic steps that frame the technique of ballet. Ballet is very physically and mentally demanding. Ballet is an art that many people misunderstand, but there is so much more to ballet.
Ballet first originated in Italy in the 1400’s, its purpose was to impress the nobility of other countries. The ballerinas would wear the fashion of the times, with big dresses, wigs, and shoes that were not good for dancing in. Ballet was brought to France when Catherine de Medicis married King Henri II. She brought the culture of ballet with her to Paris. Eventually Paris became the capitol of the ballet world. Up until 1681 all of the female ballet roles were played by men. Many people fell in love with ballet. George Balanchine brought ballet to America.
Pointe shoes are special shoes the women wear to dance on their toes. The tip of the shoe, called the box is made out of tightly packed layers of paper mache, fabric, or cardboard. This needs to be very sturdy, because the dancer will be putting all of her weight on it. The sole of the shoe, or the shank, is made out of leather board or red board, it is important for this to be sturdy, because it supports your ankles. In some professional companies pointe shoes are custom made to fit the dancer’s foot perfectly. It varies how long pointe shoes last based on the type of shoe and how frequently they are used. For example a beginner on pointe’s pointe shoes could probably last a whole year. But a professional ballerina goes through one hundred to one hundred and twenty pairs of pointe shoes in a season. Each pair of pointe shoes can cost about eighty dollars. To be able to do pointe you need to have strong ankles.

Anna Pavlova is one of the most famous ballerinas and choreographers of all time. All throughout her childhood she had wanted to be a ballerina. When she was eight years old, her mother took her to see The Sleeping Beauty at the Imperial Maryinsky Theater. At this point she had decided that she was going to be a ballerina when she was older. Two years later she was accepted to the Imperial Ballet School. In 1899 she joined the Imperial Ballet, and skipped dancing in the corps de ballet. Seven years later she was promoted to prima ballerina. In 1905 she made her big break as the dying swan. She was the first to tour ballet around the world. The dying swan was her signature role, this role made her famous. In 1911 she made her own ballet company.
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