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About omshanti

  • Birthday 03/02/1979

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  • Connection to/interest in ballet** (Please describe. Examples: fan, teacher, dancer, writer, avid balletgoer)
    late starter
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  1. Very sad and painfull news. The worse thing about this is that it is only one of so many sad news in the world. We think we live in a modern world but I have to say that so many things happening in the world today are STILL exactly the same as medieval time. Do people ever learn from history?
  2. Is it not commercially available anymore? Does anyone know a place where I can buy this movie from?
  3. Thank you very much every body for your replies. I guess it was not such a good idea, but would it not be good if the major companies in the world formed something to protect and promote ballet? Personally I thought ballet world might benefit from few changes as a whole, but there is no way to do that as a whole because ballet is completely under the responsibility of each company and most companies are (quite naturally) more concerned with business and money rather than ballet or art or creativity. As a result the fate of ballet depends on the taste of the ADs of the time of each company and its business. The variety of styles are getting less and less in ballet anyway. For example Royal Danish ballet is taking more and more dancers from outside every year who are not trained in the bournoville style. Where is the English style now? Paris opera is becoming less and less like a classical company every year. Russian companies are busy creating one night stars with the Sylvie guillem imitations. Would it not help if the companies agreed to give chances to new choreographers in classical vocabulary every year or to have certain standards of how many classical works they should perform every season. I think it might help to keep the variety of styles too. Who regulates all those versions of swanlakes , nutcrackers and changing of the musical scores? What whould Petipa or Ivanov think if they saw all those changes done to their ballets. Would it not be good to have something that acts like the guardian of ballet.
  4. This thought just came to my mind and I thought it might be good to suggest it in ballet talk. Forgive me if this idea has already been suggested and discussed before. Here it goes. In the past there were not as many people and companies who did ballet as now ,so there may not have been a need for such a thing. Now that ballet has become so popular and so many people and companies do it, Is it not better to have one central classical ballet organization that watches and manages everything related to ballet in the world, like the FIFA of football (soccer). Just a thought . What do you think?
  5. I hope nobody will mind me writing my experience regarding racism both in and outside of ballet world. First of all I am half Pashto and half Japanese, so to be accurate racially I am a mix of caucasian and mongolian races. Dancers who were similar mix as me are Nijinsky, Nureyev, Charles Jude, Tallchief sisters, Asylmuratova etc......(so many). I found out about the existence of ballet only few years ago when I was 25 and living in Britain. I fell in love with it and started taking classes seriously. Eventhough I was a nonwhite foreigner, every teacher I met encouraged me. Two of them even encouraged me to learn ballet seriously with the goal of being professional even from that age. With their encouragement I auditioned Rambert school of ballet ( which was the only school of ballet that auditioned people above 25) mixing with all the White British teenagers who had much longer experience than me in ballet. There were some Black and south Asian students in the audition too but not many. One auditioner was so kind to me and she spoke to me really kindly every time I made a mistake or appeared nervous in the class. The result was , I was put on the waiting list but in the end was not accepted. But it is obvious that it was because of my age and experience, not race. Still with all my back ground and every thing, I was offered a place on the reserve list. So from my little and short experience in ballet world , I have seen absolutely nothing of racim. Instead I only received warm and kind treatment from every single person. Ballet world is purely a world of ability and talent , and race has no significance in it. Atleast this has been my experience in it. Now allow me to tell a story which has nothing to do with ballet. First of all it might give an idea of racism and its different forms, and second of all sometimes I have a need to let out things that are deep inside me ( forgive me for using this space for doing that) . As I wrote before, I grew up in warzones and refugeecamps of the middle east, and because of my half Japanese looks I was often mistaken for a Hazara. To be graphic , I was often captured , beaten up, tortured because of it. It was a die or live situation for me. But the worst part of it was that instead of hating the people who did that to me, I hated the Hazaras , my own half Japanese side and eventually my own mother. I was a victim of racism but I became a racist myself towards half of my own identity. I experienced racism within myself and I have to say that it is not pleasant. I am not a racist in my head but I became a true racist in my heart and if I am not carefull and do not try to be objective , my true racist part will show itself and I hate it . Every time I read about a massacre of hazaras in the news papers, there is a part of me that is pleased and I am so ashamed of myself for this evil in me but I can not help it. I have been programmed in this way and the only thing I can do is to watch for it and change it little by little. I do not know what I am trying to say but objectivity and rational way of looking at things are what is needed when there is racism whithin oneself. P.S I really agree with the Kabuki analogy Helene wrote.
  6. I agree with the starting points 2dds suggests and I do think the intention of this topic is a noble one. However We have to direct the arrow of this noble intention to the right direction. First of all I think over-sensitiveness on racial issues can be dangerous, because by being over-sensitive people are still seeing each other in groups rather than individuals. It can easily turn in to racism like turning a coin.This is probably why a society can be so over-sensitive in one area(such as black and white issue) and so insensitive in another (such as calling a whole nation terrorist) at the same time. So I think the most important and difficult thing is for each person to be natural and to treat people as individual beings rather than putting them in racial categories ,and to spread this naturalness little by little, generation to generation. I am not sure if I am the right person to comment on this because I do not live in America. I think the problem lies in the society rather than the ballet world. We can use the ballet world as a mirror that reflects the problems, but We should not blame ballet and ballet world for a problem that a society or a country has. We should differentiate between things objectively and rationally. The problem is in the root of the tree rather than the leafs. I grew up in warzones and refugeecamps of the middle east with a Japanese Mother, and because of my half Japanese looks I was often mistaken for a Hazara and treated badly ( if you know about the hazaras in the middle east you will know what I mean). So by experience I know what racism is, but I do not look at the whole world through my experience. I am not ignoring America s past and I know it is deep but In my opinion when a black( or white or any race) person looks at ballet and can not feel any thing about it only because of balck and white or racial reasons, the problem is in that person s mind rather than ballet and ballet world. The point is why does a society create such a mindset in its people, and this has nothing to do with ballet and ballet world. In my opinion if the problem in the root is fixed , the ballet world will follow.
  7. Defjef I think calling ballet and ballet world [racist ] is a very subjective idea and not fair at all, and I have to say that all the other posters in this thread have been objective and right in my opinion. I really think the way you see ballet can reflect the way you see the world ( I am not meaning politically but generally), and I think that you should get rid of this over-sensitiveness on racial issues and be natural. Just try to see people as individual human-beings rather than putting them in racial categories and enjoy ballet as it is (you will enjoy it much more) . Over-sensitiveness on racial issues and [racism] are two sides of the same coin in my opinion.
  8. Canbelto Please notice that I wrote turn out and pointing the feet, I did not write degree of turn out and shape of the feet. Natural turn out and natural shape of the feet are not what matters , it is how you turn out and how you use your feet that matters. I was only trying to say that it is as fundamental as turn out and pointing the feet. How about the crisis of epaulment? By the way Fonteyn had more than ideal turn out. I had never heard that bolshoi had always been known for ugly feet. Papeetepatrick, I did not have yoga in my mind when I wrote that post. But now that you have brought yoga up, I feel I should give my opinion. Both yoga and Ballet tachnique are dicsiplines developed over millenniums (yoga) and centuries (ballet) on the same subject , human body. So there are bound to be similarities between them. Carbro and other Moderators, forgive me for being offtopic from Vishneva again, I just needed to have a ground to make things fair because I feel some people have been unfair to me in this thread. Please go back to Vishneva.
  9. I really agree with Paul Parish about Nijinsky. In his pictures as the Spectre de la rose, the softness of his arms , wrists and hands are extraordinary. Another dancer that comes to my mind is Sergei Vuharev of Kirov. He is the dancer who dances the peasant pas de deux in the Mezentseva Giselle DVD. I think his port de bras is quite exemplary and very beautiful. It is a very good example and a model of the Kirov style.
  10. Thank you chiapuris for introducing the word , although I am not sure if I agree with the location Anna Paskevska is describing the center of dancers to be , because in my opinion the center of gravity is located in the same place of the body on every human-being whether a dancer or not. ( unless she is meaning something else by center). It is in the area just under the naval. In my opinion it is not something that is located in different places on each person such as under the sternum on one person and below the sacrum on another. So I believe that the height of the center of gravity depends on how that area under the naval is placed and controled in relation to other body parts. Now the[ center of gravity] was definitely a part of what I was trying to explain but not all of it. The reason I did ( could ) not make clear whether I am talking about [technical intention] or [genetic dice-throw] is because the body , mind and [technical intention] are deeply inter-connected. Your body is shaped by the way you use it. You can tell alot only by observing a dancer s body . If you look at the kirov dancers of the past ( I am using the kirov dancers as an example because they are the most obvious ones to see), you will notice that it almost looks as if they did not have the down half of the buttocks or as if the legs started directly from the back without buttocks on them. If you look at the dancers now the buttocks are much more visible on top of the legs. One more example I thought of in order to see the difference is the Video dictionary of classical ballet. If you compare the pirruettes of the dancers in it ( again I am using the pirruettes because it is more obvious), you will see that 1. Meril Ashley really stretches upwards and her center of gravity is high. 2. the female dancer from Joffrey ballet ( I forgot her name) puts all her weight on her legs and stands firmly with the power of her legs. 3. Kevin mckenzie does not stretch upwards nor sits on his legs but balances with the whole of his body. Canbelto, I understand what you mean , sometimes it is really difficult to draw a line between preference and high standard. I am only giving my opinion on things. If I think something is right it does not mean that it is right for every body else. It is only one person s opinion. I am not pushing my opinion here. Would you have written the same thing (as what you wrote in your last post) if I was talking about turn out , pointing the feet or the crisis of epaulmant ? As for my opinion on Malakhov , I am afraid that my post has already been too long and off-topic, so do you mind if I leave it for some other time? Thank you so much for your attention on the things I write. Also to all the readers and posters ( especially Buddy), it was not my intention to take the discussion so off-topic when I wrote my first post here. I am sorry about that. I hope it goes back to it.
  11. Canbelto thank you very much for your carefull observations, but I do not think it has anything to do with the flexibility of the back or spine, nor the difference in the schools. It is the difference in the level of training and the talent of the individual dancer. Since I have explained what I think on this matter as best as I could I am afraid I have to leave it there. I will take the subject back to Vishneva as you asked. She does every thing which is needed to be done in the choreography so No there is not anything in particular that I would pick and say about her technique in general. However One big impression her dancing gave to me was that it really makes you aware of muscles. If I exaggerate ,it is like watching a body builder jumping on stage ( this is a very big exaggeration but I hope you understand what I mean). She seems to rely too much on power ,force and the strength of her muscles, which I think in order to become a better dancer and also as she ages she needs to change. She has the potential, so she just has to change this. On the other hand her incredible energy is very much suited to ballets like Don quixote. I happend to have seen her in Don Quixote with Jose Martinez and I have to say that she was wonderfull in it. Jose Martinez who has one of the purest ballet technique in present day ballet world but who lacks certain intensity in his dancing seemed to have been energized by the strength of Vishneva and looked better than his usual dancing. In my opinion they were very much suited to each other as partners because they seem to bring aspects of each other out which is normally not there and also each has something the other does not have. In my opinion Malakhov is not suited to her as a partner. Also even though Martinez was the Spanish one, Vishneva looked equally if not more Spanish ( well, she had the advantage of Don Quixote being a Russian ballet). Also She has a beautifull face which is eye-catching by itself. As an actor I have to say she is good ( much better than Zakharova), and did look convincing in the role of Gissele ( apart from her dancing which looked much stronger than Malakhov who was dancing with her, but that is not such a hard thing to do if you are dancing with Malakhov). But again my standard for Gissele is Galina Ulanova and I prefer her to Vishneva( and many other dancers).
  12. It is not purely a visual thing like prefering a type of leg or head Dale. The fault must be in my explanation. I will try to explain better although I am not sure if I can. First of all I am regretting for having used the word buttocks since it seems to be to much associated with only a certain muscle or muscles and the look of them. I am not talking about muscles here. Try standing on releve passe en avant ,take your hands off the barre and hold it. You might be able to balance there and think you did it well but push your supporting leg even harder and stand higher . There will be a point where you will start to feel that the push of your supporting leg is stronger than your weight on them. that is when you are no longer sitting on your legs and your supporting leg is not battling against the weight of your body. You are no longer standing firmly on the ground but standing lightly with your weight up. You are no longer balancing but standing with logic. Now this is a very difficult thing to explain on computer especially if the person does not see it. I am not sure about great but I think there are some dancers who have good aspects.
  13. Dale I thought I explained. It is not a matter of one dancer having a different rear vs another. It makes a difference to the total body shape and the dancing. I am not saying this relates to every body s enjoyment or non-enjoyment of Vishneva s performance. Every body has their own way of enjoying ballet and like I wrote, I was only adding a perspective on to the disscussion of her comparison with the great dancers of the past. I personally think ballet is an en lair dance and think that the lifted buttocks are closer to how it should be. Every body is free to enjoy ballet their own way But we should not forget that it is better for ballet itself to keep a certain standard. Any way like I wrote it is only a small part of the whole ballet technique.
  14. It completely depends on the viewer Dale. If he/she can see it , it matters. I do not know when it happened exactly, If you look at the female etoiles of POB only a generation ago such as Guerin(she was amazing) , Platel ( she had a habit of letting go of her feet sometimes which remindes me of Fonteyn) they had highly lifted buttocks but on the other hand from the same era Ruzimatov , Asylmuratova did not have it. How do I think it affects the line ? I think it makes a difference in the build of the dancers body and like I said the dancing becomes more Par tere without it. It is an issue regardless of sex , and yes male dancers are the same. I really do not know what is the reason Carbro , it is a mystery. From the dancers I named above it shows that it has nothing to do with extension. The only reason I can think of is maybe dancers now are too preoccupied with choreography and superficial movements. It is not holding or gripping or tucking the gluteals, if you do that it will of course make your movement range smaller and also heavier. It is more the lift in the whole hip area or the bottom of the spine which as a result affects the look of the gluteals too. This might have been a little off topic from Vishneva, and anyway it is only a small part of the whole ballet technique , so please go back to Vishneva.
  15. Canbelto I did not say that this will prevent Vishneva from being great , I only stated one difference between her (or most dancers now) and dancers of the past . As for explaining the lifted buttocks I do not know how to explain it on computer , and in my opinion it does make a little if not great difference in dancing and the look of the body of dancers. Almost all dancers from the past are good examples of it. There were still many good dancers who can be a good example of it even only a generation a go, but somehow it is almost nonexistant now apart from very few exceptions. I think the easiest way to see it is to compare Ghislaine Thesmar (lifted ) and Aurelie Dupond (not lifted ) from the two POB La Sylphide DVDs. You might be able to see it.
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