A Gem from L’Ancien

“The dance is in the stillness between the steps.”

—L’Ancien

I’ve been trying to think of a way to think about this ever since I returned to dance.

That’s it, guys. Right there ^^

Without the stillness, dance is just chaos. In modern, sometimes chaos is the goal—but even in the most chaotic moment in the most chaotic ballet, you’re always showing the audience a series of living stillnesses.

This is why, even at the barre, the moment of full extension in tendu is important, but so is the moment when you stand in fifth.

The stillness between the steps is where ballet lives and breathes.

Incidentally, this is why my group had to do the first grand allegro twice: we didn’t really show the arabesque in the air in our temps-levée arabesque.

We thought we were getting there, but we weren’t. We were still moving through from point A to point B instead of reaching through the stillness of the arabesque as we soared

We also got called out for not really jumping: I have begun to suspect that L’Ancien would rather see me really jump and be a little late than not really jump and be exactly on time. I’m built for big jumps. I should really use them.

Anyway, we fixed ourselves on the repeat. I have no idea what my TLA looked like because, for once, I was using my eyes correctly.

After class, L’Ancien said to us, “You’re completely different dancers than you were even two weeks ago.”

And then he said these three beautiful words:

“Very, very good.”

That is the best possible way to close out a ballet class on your birthday.

This afternoon and evening: trapeze class, audition, dinner, party.

About asher

Me in a nutshell: Standard uptight ballet boy. Trapeze junkie. Half-baked choreographer. Budding researcher. Transit cyclist. Terrible homemaker. Getting along pretty well with bipolar disorder. Fabulous. Married to a very patient man. Bachelor of Science in Psychology (2015). Proto-foodie, but lazy about it. Cat owner ... or, should I say, cat own-ee? ... dog lover. Equestrian.

Posted on 2018/02/10, in balllet, class notes, technical notes, uggghhh...technique and tagged . Bookmark the permalink. 8 Comments.

    • Thank you!!! So far, it’s been fantastic! 😊 It helps that the audition is one I’m not even a little worried about. I’m actually looking forward to it! 😀

  1. …..that’s *nice*.

    Happy birthday, fella.

    • Thanks! For some reason, my WP app on my tablet has been opting not to show me roughly half of my notifs :/ I had the best birthday ever 😀 A unicorn cake with edible glitter was involved 😀

  2. Happy birthday! :3

    • Thanks! ^-^ It was basically the best birthday I’ve ever, ever had!!! I am very much of the opinion that dancers throw the best parties ^-^

  3. I have heard this from my dance coaches for ages! Master the stillness!

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