I think canbelto makes a good point. As observed earlier in the thread, people are getting taller over the decades (and centuries) and it's simply not possible or even desirable for companies to conform to such rigid standards. And although it may well distort the choreography as you say, leonid, it seems to that's inevitable to some extent - over the years bodies change, styles in attractiveness and physicality change, training changes. It's absolutely true that Pavlova was considered tall (and skinny) back in the day, but that only serves to highlight that things are very different today.
Surely the answer could equally be, that you only train and employ dancers for Romantic and Petipa ballets with the correct emploi. Since when does the fact that people are taller today become either an artistic or aesthetic consideration. We do not transpose up or down operatic scores for singers because of limited or peculiar abilities. Today we find authenticity an accepted approach in the restoration and performance of opera and music. Counter tenors up until 40 years ago were almost de trop. Today they are di rigueur in many vocal works.
Either academic Romantic/Classical ballet is a high art or its an entertainment wherein we can choose to change rules willy nilly. Where are we all coming from?
Either its ok to bastardize an art form or its not and as you can plainly see, I think not.
I have absolute no problem with tall dancers in modern classical or neo- classical ballets as long as the line, shape and tempo are not interfered with.
Let us truly respect, Bournonville, Perrot, Saint-Leon, Petipa, Ivanov et al and lets hear it for shorter dancers.
I have had fun writing the above
but I am also serious in my
contention. We live in what appears
to be a vulgar age. Lets try to go back,
not to the inequalities of those early ballet
eras, but to truly respecting the
choreographers most of us admire.