Before you head to your next dance class in Altamonte Springs, Florida, learn about the amazing history that ballet has throughout the world. You are choosing to participate in an activity that has a very rich and unique past.
During the Italian Renaissance, only the very wealthy even saw ballet performances. No one who was not part of the royal court would have ever thought of participating in ballet dancing. Ballet originated in Italy, but it came to France when Catherine Medic married King Henry II. Soon, special schools were opened to teach the aristocrats how to dance. These schools were particularly popular during the time of King Louis XV who loved to perform exotic dance steps. Almost all the dances were written around mythological beings.
Soon, it was not just enough to know the right ballet moves, as dancers had to be able to sing opera while they were performing. Most of these dances were written to make people laugh. In the beginning, dancers would perform and sing during the first and third acts while the middle act had very little dancing. This changed over time with dancing being incorporated into all acts and dance steps performed by professional dancers wearing elaborate costumes becoming much more intricate.
By 1749, opera-ballet was no longer being widely performed. Instead, storylines were told through dance. Costumes became much simpler, and dancers used their bodies and movements to convey emotions. As with earlier eras, most dancers were male.
Following a period of transition, most dancers during the Romantic Ballet Era were female. This is seen as the beginning of modern ballet as we know it today. The introduction of gas lighting allowed more people to attend performances at night. For the first time, ballerinas were made to seem to float through the air on their tiptoes. Additionally, it was not until this era that special music was written just for ballerinas.
You would probably not be attending dance classes in Altamonte Springs if it were not for the Russian Imperial Ballet as ballet performances almost died out. Russian leader Peter the Great built St. Petersburg, and he was determined that the people who resided there would experience the culture. He paid several French composers to move to the city to teach dance. Additionally, he created wooden benches in ballet houses allowing most people to be able to watch the ballet.
Mr. Diaghilev brought ballet to the United States in about 1902 when he came with famous Russian ballet dancers, including Michel Fokine, George Balanchine, Adolf BoIm. Soon, those dancers settled in the United States and began paving the way for modern ballet classes.
Ballet is a fun way to exercise. Call Turning Pointe today to get started or revolutionize your own ballet dancing.