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A consice evalution of pointe work and how this relates to ballet today.

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Pointe work Pointe work is the ultimate achievement for a female dancer, as it brings a further dimension to classical work. I will look at the positioning of the body and the feet when using pointe shoes. * When rising en pointe the weight is held over the tip of the big toe, second toe and middle toe, dependant on the shape of the feet. * The position en pointe produces a straight line through the tibia, ankle, metatarsals and toes. The central line of balance over the tips of the toes creates an extension of the dancers' line through the leg and the foot. * The position of the spine is central to the balance and essential to the control of the position en pointe. * The base of support is very small, therefore pointe demands particular attention to the control of the spine, pelvis and turnout and to lift the body out of the hips. This produces lightness as well as increased speed and dexterity of footwork. Getting on to pointe There are two ways of rising on to pointe, building from the demi-pointe, Rise = an even action Releve = dynamic ...read more.


This is to achieve the correct position of the foot en pointe in relation to the leg and to build the strength to do so. Simple foot exercises can be given and working in tights or bare feet will help the teacher and dancer to recognise and correct more easily. Choosing the correct shoe * First of all you must look at the type of foot to see what type of shoe they would benefit from. I will look at a few typical shapes of foot and describe the best sort of shoe. * A poorly stretched foot with a limited arch should benefit from a low vamp, no wings and a flexible back. This is because they are easier to work with as the foot may be a little stiff it is stronger and needs less support, but more flexibility to help them achieve a more desirable and effective arch. * A high arch, which is very flexible, would benefit from a high vamp and wings. This is to contain the foot in the shoes, as although it looks good it can also be weak. ...read more.


He founded the Acad�mie Royale de Danse, which would later become the Paris Opera Ballet. Ballet had a political advantage as well in that Louis surely used his ballets, in which the courtiers bowed and curtsied to him in a variety of elaborate and elegant ways, to celebrate and glorify himself, to associate himself with divinity, and to reinforce the power of the throne. * The ballerina as we know her had not yet come into existence. Women really couldn't participate in the way men could, in large part because of their clothes. Men got to wear tights, which gave them more freedom of movement, they were able to jump and beat. Women had to wear heavy wigs and enormous head dresses, full, heavy skirts and shoes with heels, and tight corsets that restricted breathing and bending. * There were popular female dancers in the late Seventeenth and early Eighteenth Century, such as Mme. Lafontaine, Mlle. Subligny and Marie Pr�vost, but they were limited by their costumes. The men got to do all of the good steps. To make matters worse, as ballet dancing moved out of the ballrooms of royal palaces and onto the proscenium stage, women had to overcome society's disapproval of female performers. ...read more.

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