I thought these were good questions that needed some good answers and opinions.
A slightly philosophical set of questions: is a ballerina great because she touches greatness once, or does she have to do it many times? If many times, then how many and how consistently? And does greatness have to be perceived by many audience members, or only by one? If many, how many?
To add: Does superior technicality add to one's 'greatness'? Especially in these times, technical advancement has become of importance, pretty much mandatory, no?
Perhaps one's 'greatness' has to do with how they connect with the audience, i.e emotional artistry and how they convey the character being performed. But then everyone feels differently about their warmth/coldness.
Maybe it's the connection that results from partnering; maybe one dancer brings out the best of another in PDD.
Looking back on historical examples of the 'great' ballet dancers, what do you think made them great?
For example, Ulanova, Vasiliev, Maximova, Pavlova, Nureyev, Baryshnikov....the list goes on and on. I think that it was a mix of both technicality and emotional genius. But, of course, for me it is mostly the artistic quality that prevails.
What are your thoughts, if this has not been mentioned before?