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Dancers Who SmokeWhy do they put their life at RISK?


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#241 bart

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Posted 25 June 2012 - 03:40 PM

But--that said, it IS hard, awfully, to comprehend a dancer smoking!

How about a "former dancer," also a "dance teacher"?

One of the brief highlights (low-lights?) of the documentary First Positiion is a glimpse of Denys Ganio (former principal dancer with Roland Petit) smoking while teaching a ballet class in Rome. He seems quite a character. His very young, very talented student, Aran Bell, is a most appealing character, too. No one seems bothered by the smoke. On film, anyway..

Ganio is the father of Mathieu Ganio, Paris Opera Ballet etoile.

#242 jayeldee

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Posted 25 June 2012 - 04:15 PM

Sorry, I've messed up my "qoute" links, here--but bart wrote, 'How about a "former dancer," also a "dance teacher" [smoking]?'

No, I can't fathom it. I think it's just plain crazy, for a dancer to smoke, or dance teacher. But it's their decision. They know their bodies (and psyches) better than I do (all too obviously)--and indeed, better than anyone else does.

On this topic, I've just finished John Gruen's "The Private World of Ballet"--and therein, was the first I learned, of dancers smoking. (Whereupon, I made a beeline for BALLET ALERT!--to see what else I might discover on the subject.) In Gruen's collection, mention is made of Makarova and Baryshnikov and ... and a few others I can't recall--smoking their way through their interviews. It astonished me. How could they have danced?!?! I don't understand it! I ran across a mention, online, of even my heroine, Moira Shearer, smoking! Something about her not being able to leave her dressing room, in later years, without first partaking of coffee and a smoke. (By the way--and here I go, off-topic--perhaps you know, but Gruen's book also includes an illuminating interview with Violette Verdy.... And his later book, "People Who Dance", includes a very interesting conversation with Miss Shearer--who was, by the way, at least as articulate in speaking as she was in writing. But there was--to return to the topic at hand--no mention made of her smoking....)


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