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Considering Ballet Body Image


Cherilyn
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19 hours ago, The Traveling Ballerina said:

As any new year approaches, there tends to be much buzz about losing weight. This inspired me to write about the specific emphasis that is placed on dancers to have just the right body. I hope we can keep this important conversation going.

Great piece, Cherilyn. As you say, such an important conversation and I would so love it to see the upcoming generations of dancers find role models like you.xx

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2 hours ago, Katia05 said:

Great piece, Cherilyn. As you say, such an important conversation and I would so love it to see the upcoming generations of dancers find role models like you.xx

 

Thank you so much, @Katia05, for your kind words! Being acknowledged as a positive role model is one of the biggest compliments I could receive - thank you 😊

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  • 2 weeks later...

Very well written piece that concisely sums up much of this issue which is not discussed nearly enough I fear....

Want to share with young dancers but I know many will react with first thoughts/words ironically being “Great, so you must think I’m fat then!”

But it is talking about it & equipping those with ‘power’ to communicate more effectively & - dare I say? - change their own mindset towards being more accepting & rewarding of womanly bodies (& of course must also remember this is an issue for Male dancers too) 

Attitudes need to change by parents, teachers, choreographers, audiences & dancers themselves.

Edited by Peanut68
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8 hours ago, Peanut68 said:

Very well written piece that concisely sums up much of this issue which is not discussed nearly enough I fear....

Want to share with young dancers but I know many will react with first thoughts/words ironically being “Great, so you must think I’m fat then!”

But it is talking about it & equipping those with ‘power’ to communicate more effectively & - dare I say? - change their own mindset towards being more accepting & rewarding of womanly bodies (& of course must also remember this is an issue for Male dancers too) 

Attitudes need to change by parents, teachers, choreographers, audiences & dancers themselves.

 

Thank you, @Peanut68. This is definitely a sensitive issue no matter who may be having the conversation - parent/child, teacher/student, director/dancer - and I believe it is one that needs to be tailored to each individual; because there are deep psychological repercussions, there is no cut and paste way to approach, if it needs to even be approached at all. And I think that's part of the attitude change you reference: Is it really worth saying to a dancer that s/he needs to lose one pound? In my opinion, absolutely not.

 

You mention debating whether to share or not with young dancers - are you a ballet teacher?

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  • 2 years later...

There's a very interesting - and long - article in today's New York Times about body image, largely from a professional dancer's point of view.  It can be found in the March thread in the Links forum.

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28 minutes ago, alison said:

There's a very interesting - and long - article in today's New York Times about body image, largely from a professional dancer's point of view.  It can be found in the March thread in the Links forum.

 

It's so curious that this came out today, as I just yesterday brought back to The Ballet Herald homepage focus on the original article that started this thread.

 

Like Lauren Lovette, I retired considerably young (at 27) and mostly because I was tired of my life being controlled by the many gatekeepers we dancers encounter during the length of our career. 

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