Jump to content


This site uses cookies. By using this site, you agree to accept cookies, unless you've opted out. (US government web page with instructions to opt out: http://www.usa.gov/optout-instructions.shtml)

Tattoos and Piercings on Ballet Dancers?


  • Please log in to reply
131 replies to this topic

Poll: Tattos and Piercings on Ballet Dancers: (104 member(s) have cast votes)

What's your opinion?

  1. Love 'em! (4 votes [3.85%])

    Percentage of vote: 3.85%

  2. Hate 'em (82 votes [78.85%])

    Percentage of vote: 78.85%

  3. Couldn't care less. (18 votes [17.31%])

    Percentage of vote: 17.31%

Vote Guests cannot vote

#61 vicarious

vicarious

    Member

  • Member
  • PipPip
  • 23 posts

Posted 20 February 2008 - 06:45 AM

I hate the idea of it. If I knew a dancer had one, I think I'd be watching all performance to see if I could catch a glimpse. I think just knowing it was there would be a distraction.

For the balding- a #2 comb on the clippers.

#62 SanderO

SanderO

    Silver Circle

  • Inactive Member
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 621 posts

Posted 21 February 2008 - 08:45 PM

Having just returned from Beauty In Motion I can report that Diana Vishneva has a 3-4" diameter blue tattoo outside on her left pelvis. It was not obvious to the person sitting next to me, but I noticed it and confirmed it with my binocs. First I thought it was a shadow line from her costume, then a black and blue mark (odd place) but it turned out to be a tattoo for sure. I was sitting fairly close row in the Grand Tier so would be pretty hard to see despite its size. Once I knew it was there, I did find it distracting. But it was only visible when the very top of her leg at her hip bone was exposed.

Russian Prima Ballerina sports a tatt!

#63 cubanmiamiboy

cubanmiamiboy

    Diamonds Circle

  • Senior Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 5,269 posts

Posted 19 July 2008 - 10:23 AM

Ha...talk about tattoos in Miami City Ballet!. One of "Our Show" works had the boys all shirtless...wow, all the principals, Jeremy Cox, Isanusi, Sarabita...they all had all kinds of tats, and they all looked great BTW :) ...(Cox's is a little sun surrounding his umbilical site.. :wink: )
Oh, and yes...i like tats...

#64 SanderO

SanderO

    Silver Circle

  • Inactive Member
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 621 posts

Posted 19 July 2008 - 04:23 PM

What do you like about tats in general? There are so many different ones

#65 cubanmiamiboy

cubanmiamiboy

    Diamonds Circle

  • Senior Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 5,269 posts

Posted 19 July 2008 - 06:18 PM

Well, living in South Beach is like being in a perpetual Tattoo Parlor...and the city itself is infested with hundreds of this establishments. I see all kinds of tats in daily basis-(the majority of people here are shirtless most of the times ), and beautiful designs are being displayed constantly. This is a plus if they are being showed on a great body. I particularly like the old fashion ones, and those that portray pin-up girls...

#66 bart

bart

    Diamonds Circle

  • Board Moderator
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 7,320 posts

Posted 19 July 2008 - 07:06 PM

I've been rereading this thread, which has a lot of interesting stuff. It's almost died a couple of times and then been revived. Thanks, Cristian, for giving it its third (or is it fourth?) incarnation.

Question about tatoos on stage: when a staging calls for a tatoo that ISN'T really there, what do they use? transfers -- like the preteens do? or does a makeup artist paint it on?

Questions about tatoos in real life: I assume that those tatoos around the biceps (barbed wire? crown of thorns?) are meant to call attention to large, young muscles. What happens when the muscles shrink and the skin sags? Can large and prominent tatoos be removed? Is there significant cost or pain involved in doing this? (I ask because even the most muscular and/or nubile of young dancers just MIGHT come to regret some of their more public markings at some point in their lives.)

#67 aurora

aurora

    Silver Circle

  • Senior Member
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 677 posts

Posted 19 July 2008 - 07:55 PM

Questions about tatoos in real life: I assume that those tatoos around the biceps (barbed wire? crown of thorns?) are meant to call attention to large, young muscles. What happens when the muscles shrink and the skin sags? Can large and prominent tatoos be removed? Is there significant cost or pain involved in doing this? (I ask because even the most muscular and/or nubile of young dancers just MIGHT come to regret some of their more public markings at some point in their lives.)


I've heard this as a reason for not getting tattoos many times--the fact is, if those muscles/skin are saggy and old. They are going to look saggy and old with or without tats--and just aren't going to look good. So why not get the art and have that as a memory of what once was?

I'm very much in favor of only getting tats that are meaningful to the person--not just a whim "I want a tattoo!"

there is laser tat removal. It is apparently both expensive and painful, but quite doable.

there is also getting a tat covered with a new tat--it is hard to do with a large piece with lots of blackwork, but is doable. I'm thinking of doing this with a tattoo I got at 18 or 19--just because it doesn't look the way I'd like it to. I'm still not sorry I got it.

It is one of the nice things about piercings over tattoos, when you are sick of them, or don't feel they are appropriate to you at your current stage in life, you just remove them.

That said, I don't regret any of my body mods, and miss the piercings I've lost for various reasons over the years

Aurora--tattooed, pierced, and happy with that!

#68 cubanmiamiboy

cubanmiamiboy

    Diamonds Circle

  • Senior Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 5,269 posts

Posted 19 July 2008 - 11:04 PM

That said, I don't regret any of my body mods, and miss the piercings I've lost for various reasons over the years

Oh, same here...But a new tatoo is coming...! :)

#69 cubanmiamiboy

cubanmiamiboy

    Diamonds Circle

  • Senior Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 5,269 posts

Posted 20 July 2008 - 10:01 AM

So tats are best when they are meant to note some event in one's life? Why exactly do people need painted pictures on their bodies to hold onto a memory?

Do you see bod mods as enhancing the human body or decoration like the way clothes change the way a person looks?

Are they meant to communicate something about the person wearing them? Do the wearers expect to receive questions and comments about them or for them to be unnoticed and pass without comment like "plan" skin or un pierced bods?

I find them provocative and don't know what the protocol is about reacting to them. I sense it's rude to say anything but a compliment.

Do you ever find bods mods offensive and distracting? Can you not see them or do they make an statement which is always present?


All of the above.

#70 aurora

aurora

    Silver Circle

  • Senior Member
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 677 posts

Posted 20 July 2008 - 10:25 AM

Since Cristian kindly moved this over here, I will comment on it...

So tats are best when they are meant to note some event in one's life? Why exactly do people need painted pictures on their bodies to hold onto a memory?


I don't know if they are best, but it is certainly a major reason why people get tattoos.
I do think they are better (personally) if they have some significance for the person. I didn't get my first one to mark an event per se. But it was an image I had been drawing for about 6 years when I got it, which had deep significance to me, and reflected something about how I see the world, being based on something in a book that had a real, great and lasting impact on me as a person.

there is nothing *wrong* with getting an image just because you like it, but unless it means something to you personally, I think it is easy to get tired of it--and given the near permanence of tattoos...

It is also not that people NEED the image to hold on to a memory--It is a way of marking and commemorating an important event. I know many people who have gotten tattoos that were inspired by the loss of loved ones for example. Some are quite literal (a friend with a portrait of his father on his arm), others are couched in symbolism (a friend who incorporates roses into multiple tats out of love for her mother who she lost at an early age and whose middle name was Rose).

Do you see bod mods as enhancing the human body or decoration like the way clothes change the way a person looks?

I see them as a combination I suppose. But given their permanence they do require more thought than clothing choices!
I happen to find many of them aesthetically pleasing.


Are they meant to communicate something about the person wearing them? Do the wearers expect to receive questions and comments about them or for them to be unnoticed and pass without comment like "plan" skin or un pierced bods?
I find them provocative and don't know what the protocol is about reacting to them. I sense it's rude to say anything but a compliment.


Ideally (for me) they are meant to communicate something about the person "wearing" them. But some people just like the aesthetic. And that is fine too!

I think most of us HOPE that we wont receive rude questions or comments about them. But we fully expect that we will.
My tattoos are small and rarely noticed--one is on my hip so it is rarely seen, the other is on the back of my neck, so depending on how my hair is or what clothes I'm wearing, it is seen or not.

On the other hand I have a facial piercing and used to have a second. And I have gotten many many comments on them over the years (I've had them since 96 and 98--so over 10 years)

I personally never mind questions if they are respectful. Often people want to know if they hurt, which gets really boring to answer the 100,000th time. But I try to not be annoyed by it because people are curious, and they want to know.

On the other hand if you look at me like i'm something you stepped in on the street, and then ask me, i'm likely to be less than polite about it. And yes, this happens. And no, it is seriously not cool.

as far as it being rude to say anything except a compliment--yes, it rather is. People seem to think it is ok to say incredibly rude and offensive things to you if your look is not the norm--and its very offensive.

If your friend had a haircut you didn't like--would you just say that to her? no, you'd keep your opinion to yourself.
But body mods, or even "strange" haircolors make people feel they can say anything they want in response.

I used to dye my hair different colors--and people would often feel it totally ok to say things like "oh i hate that color, i thought the last color was much nicer". Think about that for a minute--would you say such a thing to someone who put blonde streaks in their hair? (And I'm not talking about situations where your opinion is asked for). Of course you wouldn't. But people seem to think if your aesthetic is not the norm, such insulting remarks are totally ok!


Do you ever find bods mods offensive and distracting? Can you not see them or do they make an statement which is always present?


Offensive? Only if they are an offensive symbol. Ugly and distracting, hell yes, but I think that about a lot of clothes I see walking through the city every day. If its someone else's body I have no call to be offended by it!

As for their visibility--Most people i know with body mods sort of forget they have them. They become part of you, like your nose, and you just don't think about them. Personally I almost never SEE my tattoos given their locations, so I forget I even have them. And I really don't see my piercings any more either--they are just there. I might look weird to you, but to me, I look totally normal :)

how is that for a long answer. I hope I haven't gone too OT--as this really isn't about mods on ballet dancers, but there are a lot of recurring questions about body mods and this seemed a good way to respond to a bunch of them in one fell swoop as it were.

To bring it back to ballet--my nose ring makes it easy to spot me at the ballet, and come say hi! or run away from the freak if you choose to do so!

#71 cubanmiamiboy

cubanmiamiboy

    Diamonds Circle

  • Senior Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 5,269 posts

Posted 20 July 2008 - 10:48 AM

:)

#72 papeetepatrick

papeetepatrick

    Sapphire Circle

  • Inactive Member
  • PipPipPipPipPipPipPip
  • 2,486 posts

Posted 20 July 2008 - 01:16 PM

That's all very interesting, aurora. And makes me realize that, although I've never been interested in these things for myself, I may have actually been offended by one once (and not the 'sexy' piercings, those just don't interest me): about 7 or 8 years ago a girl about 18 on West 12th Street was riding her bike with a skirt hanging down (pretty dangerous) and a white man's shirt. This is all right, but I then saw she had pierced cheeks--right in the middle--with tusks about 3 inches long curving out. She didn't look like a freak (I don't mind that, whatever it is, anyway I may be sometimes perceived as one for different reasons), but like this devil. I just wouldn't have been able to talk to her, because it didn't seem like a decoration but rather this hostile creature, and it was not like a ring or any other kind of piercing.

On the other hand, I was truly offended at a theater performance in 2002, in a small theater on the Upper West Side. A girl maybe in her 20s and more less traditional, had one of those things in her hair to keep it in place--it is a stick about a foot long or more and sticks way out. I think this is so obvious not to wear in a crowd I could hardly believe it, and even though I didn't say anything, that made me angry. I don't believe someone can judge whether something like this is going to be stuck in someone's eye or not. I've never seen it before nor since, though, so at least it seems mercifully rare--but I would think someone should be told that such things were dangerous. Do you know this hair stick? Anyway, even the girl with the rhinocerous tusks didn't make me angry the way this one did, although I couldn't have befriended the rhino girl because she was trying to look mean. Pardon me here, as this is even off-off :) , but it was some kind of decorative body ornament. Nobody's personal piercing, etc., could annoy me unless it too was puncture-liable.

I tend to prefer the old-fashioned kinds of tattoos, sailors, etc. I have a pretty friend who recently had a butterfly tattoed around her ankle to celebrate her new line of handbags--she loved it and I thought it was all right, but looked like a label, almost like a price tag.

#73 SanderO

SanderO

    Silver Circle

  • Inactive Member
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 621 posts

Posted 20 July 2008 - 02:30 PM

I find body mods very distracting and most of them do not make the person who has them more attractive aesthetically, just more of an eye magnet.

I found the tat on Vishneva very annoying, but perhaps that is because I was so shocked to see it that I found eyes drawn to it and trying to figure out its significance. I certainly think people have the complete right to do with and to their bodies whatever they want. I just find that most of their efforts not only don't make the person more attractive (in my eyes... which don't count of course) but less attractive. Some are neutral to my eye, but those tend to be very small and delicate.

I do think that they have become commodified and as such so many of them are completely cheesey, classless and tacky looking.

I do like to think of dancers' bodies as approaching perfection and I can't see these sorts of mods as part of that endeavor. I am certain that some or perhaps most ADs and so forth would try to prohibit their dancers from displaying tats and if they had them to cover them with makeup. It would crash any illusion in classical ballet I would think.

#74 aurora

aurora

    Silver Circle

  • Senior Member
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 677 posts

Posted 20 July 2008 - 04:57 PM

I then saw she had pierced cheeks--right in the middle--with tusks about 3 inches long curving out. She didn't look like a freak (I don't mind that, whatever it is, anyway I may be sometimes perceived as one for different reasons), but like this devil. I just wouldn't have been able to talk to her, because it didn't seem like a decoration but rather this hostile creature, and it was not like a ring or any other kind of piercing.


i can understand being taken aback by that.
I got my first piercing in england (first piercing which wasn't via a piercing gun in my ear)
The piercer was this incredibly pierced woman, who totally intimidated me. She had 60+ piercings. And initially looked scary to me.
And you know what, she was really really sweet. And generous and funny. And said that I was much better about the pain than she was!

I do know what you are saying, I'm just bringing this up, because in the mid 90s to early 2000s I was really really gothed out. And my liking that aesthetic had nothing at all to do with how other people perceived me--except perhaps in the small sense that it weeded out people who were close minded in a way that wouldnt have appealed to me. But people often thought my look was a sign of some sort of agression, or hostility. I can't tell you how many people told me that I was totally intimidating and "scary" but then they met me and realized i was really nice and friendly.

Sorry that REALLY went OT, but they aren't totally unrelated. Sander0 has brought up that he doesn't find body mods aesthetically pleasing or enhancing, but for a lot of us who have such mods, and perhaps in some contrast to more socially acceptable body modifications (say, fake breasts for example), those of us who get them, do it because WE like the way we look with them, not to appeal to someone else's aesthetic standard.

Personally I also have a sense of appropriateness about them. If I am teaching, I don't wear my nose ring (though I think my students would really like it if I did!) because it isn't acceptable to my university. I don't agree with this, but I accept it.

Similarly, when I'm doing classic 40s/50s style burlesque, I don't wear my nose ring--I'm emulating or recreating images of traditional feminine beauty--and my nose ring does not fit in with that aesthetic. If I'm doing a more modern routine, or a classic routine at a more "alternative" event--I might wear it, because it fits in with the aesthetic, or tweaks things in a way that thumbs its nose at the same 50s aesthetic I'm evoking.

I tend to prefer the old-fashioned kinds of tattoos, sailors, etc.


I like those too, and at one point was quite tempted to get a pin up girl tattooed on me. :off topic:

I personally don't have more tattoos because I have become known as a performer for my skin (i know that sounds weird and i've certainly done nothing to encourage it, but it is true)--its very white and is one of my trademarks.
On me, at this time, more tattoos would detract from a natural asset. But in the future, who knows!

#75 SanderO

SanderO

    Silver Circle

  • Inactive Member
  • PipPipPipPipPip
  • 621 posts

Posted 20 July 2008 - 06:27 PM

We fashion our looks for ourselves, of course, and to appeal to others in a "positive" non threatening way, or perhaps in an way to attract others attention positively. We sort of make an advertisement of who we are in how we groom and look. This may be misleadin and give a completely false impression as Aurora noted about the women in the UK who had 60 pieces. But that is reality. We make assumptions when we read people.

When I see a tall bunhead with a straight back and feet outturned with a big bag over her shoulders I read that as a ballet dancer/student. But I could be completely wrong. I think we all use these sorts of stereotypes, but most of us know that these are presumptions and not facts or reality.

If I saw Aurora not knowing a thing about her I would think her a member of goth, punk or some other outlier culture. But reading her here, I see her as a sensitive dancer and this is at loggerheads with what I would have presumed. Stereotyping can be very dangerous.

If I do see her at the ballet I will be sure to introduce myself and certainly offer her a champagne or glass of wine or brownie... whatever she wants. I have enjoyed her comments and learned from them bod mods notwithstanding.


0 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 0 guests, 0 anonymous users


Help support Ballet Alert! and Ballet Talk for Dancers year round by using this search box for your amazon.com purchases (adblockers may block display):