Foreverreblogging because LEONESIA <3




Mikhail Baryshnikov

I live the perfection of Zakharova and the eye on the camera of this artist!

Bolshoi warm-up.

Lauren Lovette’s debut as Sugar Plum. (Photo: Andrea Mohnin)

Lauren Lovette and Chase Finlay

Rehearsals for International Evenings of Dance and Larry Keigwin’s Premiere at the 2013 Vail International Dance Festival on 7.31.13.
Photo (C) Erin Baiano


Gelsey Kirkland on her struggle with the mirror in Dancing on My Grave

Throughout the early phases of my career, the mirror was my nemesis, seductive to the point of addiction. Stepping through the looking glass meant confronting a double who exposed all of my flaws and pointed out all of my physical imperfections. Over a period of time, the image in my mind clashed with the image in the glass. Until the opposition between the images was resolved, I saw myself as a walking apology, unable to attain or maintain my constantly refined ideal of physical beauty.The endless repetition of barre exercises in front of a mirror reflects a distorted image many people have of ballet, an image shared by many dancers. The physical side of the discipline does involve a certain degree of tedium, to say nothing of the pain. But the hours of practice are minor compared to the emotional terror that can sometimes haunt a ballerina when she studies her reflection in the mirror. This anxiety is not due to simple vanity or fear of professional rejection. …Most dancers ultimately seem to drown themselves in their own images pushed by forces unseen. The dimensions of the tragedy are revealed only when lives and personalities are destroyed. Until then the damage remains invisible. I suspect every dancer experiences the mirror in a uniquely personal way, although many are perhaps oblivious to the power it exerts over their lives and how that state of artistic servitude has come into being….As a primary teaching tool for dance, the mirror fosters the delusion that beauty is only skin-deep, that truth is found only in the plasticity of movement. It seems preferable to imitate rather than create. Imitation can be varied to create the impression of originality. There are endless possibilities for breaking the human mold into novel patterns. To be daring in dance no longer involves risk, virtuosity, and strength of conviction. The dancer can win approval for steps that require no real decision in creative or compositional terms. The dancer is trained to watch, to enter the world of the mirror until it is no longer necessary to even look. To the extent that a dancer becomes a complacent reflection, he or she does not learn how to test beauty, how to discover its inner life. In thes way, the mirror can trap a dancer’s soul, unltimately breaking creative spirit. Such a dancer is created, but does not know how to create. With success and popularity, the situation becomes more precarious. At any moment, with the capricious changes of fashion, a glance to check the mirror may reveal tragedy — that he or she has been created for nothing.