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Mme. Hermine, September 23, 2012
Posted September 23, 2012
Ruth Page, filmed c 1977
This is inspiring! I will try to remember this video when I am complaining like a baby in my head during yoga class when doing ardha chandrasana!!! If she can do all that at that age, I should stop being such a baby!
"I can't do 32 fouettes anymore, but then,I never could..!"
Ballet dancers stories overoming physical limitations are many out there. From the top of my head I recall Viillella's and Farrell's books on dealing with serious lessions, and then of course Alonso and her early non reversable blindness. The stories are indeed inspiring.
Thanks, Mme. Hermine for the clip.!
Lovely! Nothing more inspiring than showing up to a class and seeing people continue (or even start, as I recently saw!) to do ballet in their 60s, 70s, 80s.
I LOVE this video of Ruth Page. I believe her -- it DOES feel good.
I went to class this morning and had pretty good luck to the left. my right leg's [in the immortal words of Monty Python] hanging off something awful....
Everybody's got their own personal reasons. For me, it's very satisfying to dance musically. If you can't turn, you can balance. If you can't releve, do it on flat. but dance it. if you can't stay up, you can deepen your plie. It helps when the teacher makes beautiful combinations. Sally Streets is a fountain of wonderful phrases. They just pour forth. SOme of them are really exercises in changing directions. Some have a lilt. Today, we had a lot of down-downs [e.g., where you land in coupe, stay down and coupe with the other foot]. Wonderful rhythms. I am so lucky to be able to study with her.
BTW, it's LIKELY that sally was in the corps of that fabulous Western Symphony we all love so much. She was in the original cast, and she moves like that -- you DO stop, but then you go again IMMEDIATELY.
Lovely to see. Thank you for this clip.
Posted September 24, 2012
I do think as we age we must keep moving. If you don't keep moving you lose movement. So this video is truly an inspiration. After being mugged and having a broken arm and hip it would be easy to just say you can't do certain things anymore, but she does what she can in that video. That is what people should do.
The talking head is Celeste Holm, BTW.
The little studio she is shown in was in her apartment.
I remember when she was mugged; both attacks occurred a little more than a year apart. One of them, if I recall, was outside her home in evening hours, and the second not far from the school, in the day time. I think one of the students actually found her in the snow. I went to see her in the hospital and was alarmed by the way she looked that day; turned out it was the day before the abdominal surgery the narration alludes to. But she was back much more quickly that anyone imagined she would be. She had this exercise they were making her do to help her arm range of motion; she had to stand face to face with a wall with her palm on the wall at the level of her shoulder, and slowly do little crawling movements with her fingers to try to get her arm to go a bit higher each time, and sometimes we would help her by gently pushing her elbow up as she did it. She was a very original and interesting person.
Posted September 26, 2012
thanks for this! Very inspiring indeed!
I love her humor and perseverance.
Wish i could do a barre every day... perhaps I will have to install one in my apartment, too.
Posted September 27, 2012
Thanks for posting this Mme Hermine. I've had a bit of illness in recent years and, for me, this is inspirational.
Posted September 28, 2012
I'm glad, renata, that's why I posted it. She came to morning class every day that she could, and sometimes she taught. I go back just long enough to remember when she would try a little bit of center too.
one little thing she did that might help you if this is a concern for you. Since her arms were particularly weak after all the assaults, etc., and since she always wore a tunic or light shirt over her unitard like you see in the video, she would usually wear one that had pockets, so if her arm on the free side got very tired, she could finish the exercise with her hand in her pocket!
In light of our aging/injured population and financial exigencies, more and more ballet companies are offering ballet-based movement therapies and classes in adaptive ballet technique. What a godsend! Here, too, Ruth Page blazed a trail.
Great tip about the pockets! Thank you, Mme. Hermine.