Styles of Ballet

Earlier styles, such as French ballet, Italian ballet, and Russian dance, were associated with geographical roots. Later styles, such as neoclassical ballet and contemporary ballet, merged classical ballet with various dance methods.

The romantic era brought romantic ballet style, the most performed classical ballet style, in the nineteenth century. Ballerinas, female dancers dressed in traditional short white tutus, are the centre of attention. They frequently portrayed the magical female who enslaved mortal men’s hearts. This style is distinguished by pointe technique, precise body movements, and powerful emotions. La Sylphide and Coppélia are two of the most well-known romantic ballets.

  • Classical ballet vocabulary and techniques distinguish classical ballet styles such as French, Italian, and Russian. Classical ballet training methods are sometimes named after their originator, such as the Cecchetti method, named after Italian ballet dancer Enrico Cecchetti. A Royal Academy of Dance method was established in London in 1920. This English style combined elements of French, Italian, Russian, and Danish styles. The Nutcracker and Swan Lake are two of the most well-known classical ballets by Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky.
  • Neoclassical ballet In contrast to classical ballet incorporates abstract aspects such as no strict setting, plot, or costumes, as well as minimal set design. It does away with formality and opens the door to new techniques and ideas. Neoclassical ballet style gave way to modern ballet style. Greater athleticism was preferred over subtle manoeuvres.
  • Contemporary ballet uses ballet techniques such as classical ballet as well as aspects from modern, ethnic, and jazz forms, and it allows for experimentation with ballet and modern dance. The distinction between contemporary ballet and contemporary dance, as well as contemporary ballet and neoclassical and modern ballet, is fine. Dancers’ movements are larger and faster, and it is distinguished by powerful athleticism, floor work, leg turn-in, barefoot dance, acting, and mime.

Methods of Ballet

Methods are systematic and standardised classical ballet training systems that are frequently developed by a single designer or a ballet company.

  • Italian ballet- The Cecchetti method, named after ballet dancer Enrico Cecchetti, is used in Italian ballet.
  • Russian ballet- The Vaganova method was named after dancer Agrippina Vaganova, and the Legat method was named after dancer Nikolai Legat.
  • English ballet- The Royal Academy of Dance training method was developed by a group of professional ballet dancers for the English ballet style.

There is no single originator who has standardised the French and American ballet styles as a training system or method. The French ballet style features a training structure that includes organisations such as the Paris Opera Ballet School.

Techniques of Ballet

Ballet technique standardised bodily movement patterns and execution. They specify toe pointing, body posture, arm movement, and turn mode. Ballet methods are an important aspect of ballet training drills. They are practised to become a part of the ballet dancers, to develop ballet aesthetics, and to avoid accidents.

Ballet language is rich in words, defining defined stances or movements.

The ballon method describes how a ballet dancer appears lightfooted while jumping and lightweight as if defying gravity.

  • Bravura is a flamboyant style of ballet dancing that includes many intricate moves.
  • A pirouette is a non-travelling turn on one leg that includes one or more rotations.
  • The term “pointe technique” refers to dancing on the tips of completely extended feet.
  • The split is a leg position in which the legs are extended in opposite directions. Legs stand to the side in a straddle split. The front split indicates that one leg is forward and the other is back.
  • Plié is a continuous outward bending of the knee with the upper body held upright.
  • A grand jeté is a long horizontal jump that begins with one leg and ends with the other.
  • Turnout technique refers to the completing of motions with the legs rotated outward.
  • Assemblé refers to a two-footed jump.
  • A fouetté is a motion in which the body and working leg are oriented differently due to a fast pivot on the supporting leg.
  • The term “port de bras technique” refers to the smooth movement of one’s arms into various positions.
  • The alignment technique entails maintaining a vertical alignment of the head, shoulders, and hips.
  • Cambré technique refers to bending the body from the waist forward, backward, to the side, or in a circular motion and returning to the center.
  • Arabesque body position indicates that the ballet dancer stands on one supporting leg that is straight and another leg that is turned out and stretched behind the straight body.

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