In Solidarity With The Ballet Community

Image Credit: nytimes.com

If you’re a ballet dancer, you’ve probably heard what has been going on for the past few days. Good Morning America’s talk show host Lara Spencer had mocked Prince George for taking ballet – and on-air too. The British royal family has yet to comment, but the ballet world took up their arms and defended Prince George, as well as all of the male ballet dancers in the ballet community. Though Lara Spencer has since apologised, one wonders – why, in the 21st century, are male ballet dancers still mocked for being ballet dancers?

Men Started It All

The ballet world is still largely female dominated worldwide, but did you know that the very first ballet dancers were male? In medieval times, women weren’t allowed to dance, and men were the first to take up ballet. Fast forward in time when women had more freedom, and slowly they filled up the ballet world. As a result, barely anyone remembers the fact that ballet all started with men, and now most people still view ballet as a typical feminine activity. However, we’re forgetting one very important fact here.

#boysdancetoo

Image Credit: pinterest.com

#boysdancetoo

That’s right they do, because why shouldn’t they? In all of history, there has been plenty of oppression going on, and you’d think that after learning about it we’d be more open to an individual’s rights and freedom, but even in 2019 male ballet dancers are still mocked and made fun of. Ballet is a dance, an activity, a discipline, an art form, a lifestyle – and those who want to pursue ballet should be free to do so. In light of the Lara Spencer-Prince George incident, there was a flash mob of 300 dancers showing up in front of Good Morning America studios in New York, led by professional dancers Travis Wall, Robbie Fairchild, Fabrice Calmels and Alex Wong. Both male and female dance enthusiasts, some of them just around Prince George’s age showed up for “class”, and it truly is an amazing sight to see a supportive community for a common passion. Check out the “class” on Instagram, and then enjoy the fun video of men doing what they do best and love best!

https://www.instagram.com/p/B1oPLpdnmfy/

The Importance Of Male Ballet Dancers

Just like much of everything else, ballet is constantly evolving, and breaking through boundaries. However as progress is ongoing, classical ballet such as Swan Lake is still highly revered, and it can never be pulled off without male ballet dancers. There are roles that need to be filled by male ballet dancers, and the involvement of male ballet dancers provide a different kind of dynamic to ballet as an art form. As males, they have a lot more strength, and they wow the audience with explosive jumps and versatile turns, while still maintaining the fluidity and grace of the movements. Furthermore, in ballet there is also a lot of partnering work, called pas de deuxPas de deux work isn’t easy, and let’s not get too specific. Let’s just say that without the males, who will lift the females into the air?

Image Credit: deborahjones.me

It’s 2019. Let’s not mock, criticise and judge others for what they love, male or female. We’re heartened by the fact that the ballet community is standing together whenever one of us is attacked, and this is us chipping in to lend some support as well. Expression Platform encourages you to chase your dance dreams, and to follow through. If you have a story of your own to share, please write in to us, because we could use more real-life stories to inspire and support others!

Author

Yiing Zhi

Embarking on the journey of self-discovery through dance.

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