VRSfanatic, Natalia and...Azulynn (I think you were the ones asking). My book is already listed on Amazon.com and can be pre-ordered there. I will paste the link below. It officially is "born" in September, with printing/publishing schedules what they are. I appreciate your interest and if you read the book, please do give me any feedback you have. It was a very interesting labor of love on my part, and I hope it can support further discussion about the development and future of Russian ballet as a whole.
Here is the link:"Vaganova Today"
Several people made some excellent points, as I just happened back to the forum to a new thread, new page, and new conversation! VRS thank you for the detailed explanation above for what many people do not know. I reiterate some of that in my book (I hope it will not bore you, there is history of Vaganova's life and teachings, which I know you are already well-versed in, down to minute details :-)! )
I like how someone phrased it above, that high extensions are not (always) just a matter of degrees but rather a sign of what has been lost and what else is missing when the focus is on...well, on degrees. All else equal a high leg, per se, is not the problem; but the issue is that typically nowadays all else isn't equal. When the artistry is lost, or never present to begin with, (ärtistry in the sense of the *great* dancers of old, Semyonova, Ulanova, Maximova, etc) and the leg is whacked up there, we end up not with Aurora or Odette but some strange 21st century attempt to modernize what maybe doesn't need to be modernized. Of course, contemporary choreography is another issue.