What is Ballet • an artistic dance form performed to music using precise and highly formalized set steps and gestures. • Ballet Can: • tell a story or • express a thought or emotion. • magical, exciting, provoking or disturbing.
History of Ballet • Italian Courts in the Renasissance, 15th & 16TH Century • Noblemen and women were treated to lavish events(weddings) • Early ballet was participatory • Attire was fashion from the time period • Formal Gowns that covered legs and ankles • In the 16th century, Catherine de Medici, • an Italian noblewoman/interest in Arts • wife of King Henry II of France • began to fund ballet in the French court • Her elaborate festivals = growth of ballet de cour,a program that included dance, decor, costume, song, music and poetry
History of Ballet • 17th Century ballet developed as performance-focused art under King Louis XIV • French Ballet Terminology • Pierre Beauchamp, • codified the 5 positions of feet and arms, • Kings personal dance teacher • director of the Dance company • Jean-baptiste Lully, violinist, dancer, Choreographer, and composer…….would cast the king • 1661, Louis XIV founded Academie Royale de Danse, First Ballet Company
History of Ballet • Popularity throughout Europe • Professional Ballet Troupes toured Europe • 18th Century advanced in technical standards and it became a serious art form on par with opera • Express character & assist in the narrative • Jean-Georges Noverre • Wanted masks removed and costumes to show off dancers figures, bring life to the images • Composition was reformed • Venice was center of dance in Europe • Italian Ballet Techniques remained dominant until Russia techniques supplanted them in early 20th Century
19th Century • Ballerina most popular dancer in Europe • Ballet hero's often played by a woman • Shift in social change, new techniques such as pointe work that gave the ballerina prominence on the stage • Ballet Boxed toe shoe invented to support pointe work • Genevieve Gosselin, Marie Taglioni, and Fanny Elssler…….pointework Marie Taglioni: 1831 In Zephire et Flore
Early 19th CenturyRomantic Movement • Classical Ballet during this movement which influenced the art, music, and ballet were known as Romantic Ballets • Supernatural world of spirits and magic • Shows women as fragile and passive • choreographers composed romantic ballets that appeared light, airy and free • Pointe work, became the norm for the ballerina. • The romantic tutu, a calf-length, full skirt made of tulle, was introduced. • Early classical ballets such as Giselle and La SylphideCreated during the romantic movement
Later 19th CenturyRussia & Ballet • Recognized tradition of ballet • The female dancers' classical tutu as it is recognized today began • It consisted of a much shorter, stiff skirt supported by layers of crinoline or tulle • revealed legwork and difficulty in her movements • Russian choreographers and composers took it to new heights. • Marius Petipa’sThe Nutcracker, The Sleeping Beauty and Swan Lake, by Petipa and Lev Ivanov, represent classical ballet in its grandest form. • The main purpose was to display classical technique • (pointe work, high extensions, precision of movement and turn-out) • Complicated sequences that show off demanding steps, leaps and turns were choreographed into the story.
20th Century Ballet • Ballet Russesbrought Ballet back to Paris • Russian choreographers experimented with movement and costume, moving beyond the confines of classical ballet form and story. • the ballet The Rite of Spring, a work so different (dissonant music, its story of human sacrifice and its unfamiliar movements) it used the audience to riot. George Balanchine, • a Russian who emigrated to America, would change ballet • neo-classical ballet, a form that expands the classical form. • greatest innovator of the contemporary “plotless” ballet. Today Ballet is: • multi-faceted • Classical forms • traditional stories and • contemporary choreographic innovations
Types of Ballet Story ballets • tell a story. • they contain narrative action, characters, and a beginning and end. • Examples: • The Nutcracker and The Sleeping Beauty are famous story ballets from the 19th century
Types of Ballet • PBT company dancers perform in Twyla Tharp’s plotless ballet, • In the Upper Room, 2010 Plotless ballets • no storyline • utilize the movement of the body and theatrical elements to interpret music, create an image or to express or provoke emotion. • Choreographer George Balanchine was a prolific creator of plotless ballets.
Styles of Ballet Classical ballet • Oldest and most formal/traditional style • originated in Renaissance Italy and established its present form during the 19th century • Focuses aesthetics and technique • Pointe work, turn-out of the legs, and high extensions • Graceful and flowing movements • Balance & symmetry • Emphasis on story ballets • Elaborate sets and costumes Classical Ballets • Coppélia, • The Sleeping Beauty, • The Nutcracker • Swan Lake. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=25-5ksjxGg4
Types of Ballet Neoclassical Ballet • introduced in the 20th century • Uses ballet terminology but less rigid than classical ballet • increased speed, energy and attack • manipulation of the classical form • asymmetry; an off-balance feel • non-narrative; often one-act ballets • paired down aesthetic—simple sets and costumes Neoclassical Ballets • Apollo • Serenade • Cinderella • Carmen • Romeo and Juliet http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DUNQjjbozF8 Choreographers: George Balanchine Frederick Ashton
Types of Ballet Contemporary Ballet • influenced first by classical ballet then by modern dance you may see: • floor work • turn-IN of the legs • greater range of movement and body line • pointe shoes, barefoot, socks, or anything else the choreographer wants • Breaks the rules of classical and neoclassical ballet (no strict body line) • Mikhail Baryshnikov ( worked with modern dance choreographers) • Renowned contemporary ballet choreographers include Twyla Tharp, Paul Taylor and Dwight Rhoden. In contemporary ballet • http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mF2k4RRfBb0