Posted 20 March 2002 - 04:17 AM
and compare that to classical alignment.
What orthopaedists call hyper-extension, and what from the standpoint of classical dance, is a text-book form of distortion and misalignment, has now become "standard" technique.
No personal criticism is meant here of Miss Cojocaru, I would hasten to add. She is doing what her teacher taught her, and what is EXPECTED of all females today in classical dance.
[ March 20, 2002, 04:18 AM: Message edited by: katharine kanter ]
Posted 20 March 2002 - 07:20 AM
Posted 20 March 2002 - 07:42 AM
Posted 20 March 2002 - 07:50 AM
Posted 20 March 2002 - 09:06 AM
I've been told by several sports orthopaedists that two forms of injury they commonly see among classical dancers today, are the ripping or shredding of the membrane covering the hip joint (yukkk!) and stress fractures of the hip, owing, precisely, to the sort of movement shewn in the photo.
Posted 20 March 2002 - 10:55 AM
I'm not sure we have any medical experts on the board, so it's dangerous to be making assumptions as to what causes injuries among dancers.
A report just last week on stress fractures in the hip of young children cited low flouride in water as a factor (and none in bottled water which is seen more and more in gyms and studios everywhere).
Every individual body is unique and we can't make blanket statements as to injury reports either.
As for the hip being the heaviest joint, that depends on what context you're looking at. For someone walking, it's the knee, for a handstand, it's the shoulders. It's a very semantic-heavy subject.
Posted 20 March 2002 - 11:08 AM
Posted 22 March 2002 - 10:04 AM
Posted 22 March 2002 - 12:25 PM
I am reminded of the publicity given to Nureyev's elevation, mostly by ignorant journalists. When he did his tragic farewell tour in the 80s people asked for their money back because "he never left the ground". I was stupefied that people went to see that great artist in order to see him jump (impressive though that was when he was young).
It is very sad if good, expressive artists are indeed languishing (if you can call it that - I'd have killed, almost, to be in the back row) in the corps. I suppose it all depends on directors and choreographers.
There are not many Alina Cojocarus - let's not destroy the ones we have. Imagine what we would have lost if Fonteyn had stopped dancing when she was 25 or 30 - all her best years were after that. But then, given a director who wanted acrobatics, she would never have emerged from the corps in the first place.
[ March 22, 2002, 12:32 PM: Message edited by: Helena ]
Posted 22 March 2002 - 01:50 PM
It seems I am rambling, but I get frustrated too as a teacher. Some of my most talented students, I fear, will be held back from the best opportunities because they do not give themselves a nosebleed with every grand battement.
Lastly, is it possible that like many trends, this trend is cyclical? Could the pendulum swing back.
Posted 22 March 2002 - 03:21 PM
We can't know yet, of course, but if one looks back at history, it does seem to be cyclical -- or a pendulum, depending on one's theory. Mine is (not original to me, of course) that when something goes as far as it can in one direction, it has to go back because there's nowhere else for it to go.
I think every burst of creative energy -- the early court ballets, the grand mythological ballets, the Romantic Era, Petipa's post-Romantic (or late Romantic, depending how you see it) work, the Diaghilev Ballet Russe, and on and on begin very strongly, establish a strong, original voice which becomes a formula. When the formula is exhausted, attention turns to sonmething else.
Dance has stood still before -- the Judson Church movement in modern dance, all about found movement, minimalism -- I can remember when it was news that Lucinda Child added a third step to her vocabulary (!!!) -- all of that came after the Graham-style grand epics had gone through most of Greek literature and mythology and a good chunk of American history. Is it that people want something new? (I think not. Balanchine's formula lasted a long time, as did Bournonville's and Petipa's. I think people will be entertained by a formula as long as its inventor keeps inventing and entertaining.) Or is it that a new inventor comes along with something so astounding that all attention is diverted there (gets my vote)?
As far as technique goes, the hyperextended line, the high kicks, the gazillion turns -- unless they just go for it and put roller bearings in the pointe shoe, which has also been done, though not on a regular basis, and not in "Swan Lake" -- I think this will be stopped when a beautiful young dancer whose classical purity is so breathtaking, her dancing set off in a work that deserves it, will make us all catch our breaths again and everything else will seem tawdry.
I cling to the stories that when Taglioni (just such a dancer) came onto the scene, everyone new to the Theatre -- the young people that the new movement brought in -- were ecstatic and celebrated her as the symbol of her age, while their grandfather's said, "Ah! She's just like Bigatoni" -- a dancer long out of fashion.
I think, too, it will help when we have choreographers who are actually interested in the classical vocabulary. I really do think that's beginning.
Posted 22 March 2002 - 08:44 PM
I think I'm talking in circles. I'll stop now.
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