Thursday, June 17, 2004


well, ballet was humiliating and frustrating but inspiriting in some respects, too. the class i took was a slow level 1, which i interpreted as being, well, slow. um, not so much.

to give you some background, i haven't taken ballet in quite some time. how long ago, you ask? well, let me just tell you my ballet leotard is teal. remember when magenta and teal were all the rage? anyway, it's been a while. at the same time, i didn't want to take basic ballet because i don't want to start from scratch [and they don't let you pay per-class for basic anyway].


  • the teacher was passive, unprepared, and mumbly [or maybe i'll need to bring my hearing aid next time]. she never introduced herself, never took control, never seemed qute sure of what she was doing, and didn't explain well. i think she wasn't that thrilled about teaching this class. i think she could sense some confusion at times [only a few were able to execute the barre combos without sequence errors] but didn't know how to address it, so she just parrotted, "questions? questions?" not the kind of teacher that makes you want to work for her.

  • i'm not used to the barre combos yet, and these were what i perceived to be more complex than the combos i'd done back in the mezozoic age, so i was like, "hold the phone, joan!" i really wanted to concentrate on proper technique, but i found it too hard to remember to switch my port-de-bras while balayéing because i would forget whether to balayé devant or derrière. what would happen is that, i would eff it all up on the right side and just jack around, trying to get the sequence. after sort of getting the jist of it, i'd do it well and execute with decent technique on the left. so i'm lopsided now -- my left calf is like piano wire today.

  • honey-chile, my body just doesn't work like that. we had to do seven ronde-de-jambes par terre on each count during barre work then close to fifth. the music wasn't that slow, and instead of just frantically waggling my hip, crossing my working leg over the base and throwing my leg around, i went at my own pace, trying to keep my hip squared and my foot turned out and closed to fifth on 8 after maybe doing five.


  • when the combination was simple or something i could grasp, i didn't look half bad. i am very mindful of placement and alignment -- i just can't remember whether to close to first or fifth alla time. despite my ruined ankles, never-look-straight legs, and bubble-butt, i'm not an eyesore.

  • i got a nice workout. i sweat a lot and feel that pleasant dull ache in my traps and delts. the idea of getting my arms back again keeps me considering coming back!

does anyone know where there is a nice, slow ballet class for adults in the city with a terrific teacher where i can pay per class? i heard patty at ruth page is very technique-intensive, and i'd love that. send me your suggestions!

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