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Technical Manual and Dictionary of Classical Ballet
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Technical Manual and Dictionary of Classical Ballet

4.34  ·  Rating details ·  387 Ratings  ·  29 Reviews
"Miss Grant has made more information available in one book than we have ever had before. Teacher's organizations would do well to consider the use of Miss Grant's Technical Manual as an official textbook." — Dance Magazine
Teacher recommended, Gail Grant's Technical Manual has long been one of the most popular and effective ballet reference guides. Completely revised and u
Paperback, 3rd revised, 176 pages
Published June 1st 1982 by Dover Publications (first published 1967)
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Mar 03, 2008 rated it really liked it
I feel like a nerd putting this book on here...but if you ever need a ballet dictionary, this is a good one!
Jun 16, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: balletomanes, dancers of all genres
The best ballet dictionary available.
Nov 30, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: dance
A must have for every reference shelf and dance lover.
Sep 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I have read through this cover to cover as a student and I would highly recommend it as a required text for students and handy reference for teachers. Covers French, Vaganova and Cecchetti definitions.
Jennifer B.
Jan 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Very complete.
Feb 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Oldie but a Goodie

This is still one of the best resources for ballet terminology around. Spelling, pronunciation, definitions and a quick overview of Cecchetti, Varganova and French school technique differences is included where needed. Most of the terms are in french which is the universal vocabulary of ballet since King Louis XIV. There are also some line drawings to illustrate various positions which are also useful. A must for the aspiring dancer.
Marjorie Jensen
I've used this book in many advanced ballet classes and when working on my own choreography. Also, I've used it when crafting experimental creative writing pieces. You can read one of my odd choreographic writing pieces in the latest issue of Sonic Boom:
Sep 29, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Only dancers or former dancers with entirely too much time on their hands will enjoy this. i am totally loving it, as it "tweaks" my memory and helps me understand my enduring love of all that the human body can do.
Hannah Sobieski
Nov 29, 2010 rated it it was amazing
This dictionary is very technical, but very informational. I read it to help with my dancing, and the vocab did end up helping in the long run. I read it through, but I am going through again on my own time to brush up on my knowledge.
Elana Gravitz
Apr 24, 2011 rated it liked it
Who knew there were so many types of pas de bourree?
Dec 26, 2008 rated it really liked it
A must read for anyone who loves, studies or practices classical ballet. Very helpful dictionary of all those terms that some of us forget over the years.
Susan Cushing
Dec 04, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: dance
Still an essential reference!
Laura the Highland Hussy
May 30, 2009 rated it it was amazing
the BEST out there! I've had it since I was 15, and I love it! I even used it in school!
Madame Mona Lisa
Oct 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Recommended for Classical Ballet students especially helpful for vocabulary of dance moves
Feb 20, 2015 rated it really liked it
Very informative!
Jul 27, 2011 rated it it was ok
Shelves: dance
In the age of the internet, books no longer seem like an appropriate medium to convey information about dance movement. Time to look that shit up on YouTube...
Jul 26, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: dance
every dancer should have this. Especially if you have ever taught dance. Awesome reference book.
Feb 06, 2012 rated it really liked it
Great source. Good explanations. Visuals could be a little clearer but once you comprehend the orientation of the diagrams it becomes quite easy. Go to book for quick definition of terms and steps.
Timothy Deer
Jul 18, 2014 rated it really liked it
The gold standard in its genre. The illustrations are dated but clear. I'm not sure what the practical use of the book is, but alas, perhaps Julie Kent could explain that.
Jan 07, 2008 rated it really liked it
own 4r ballet things....NOT A BOOK!!!!
Aug 15, 2010 rated it it was amazing
All encompassing manual of ballet terms. Great reference.
Aug 17, 2010 marked it as to-read
Shelves: dance
recommended by roslyn as a great comprehensive guide to ballet
Savannah Helmer
Feb 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing
This ballet manual was very informative. It helped me understand many old things that I have learned about the art of ballet, and also learn some new things.
Tammy Rhoades-Baldwin
Jan 28, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Still the best ballet dictionary on the market.
Bethany Phelps
Oct 07, 2014 rated it really liked it
I referred to this book often during my collegiate elective “Intro to Ballet”. It gives definitions, pictures, and descriptions. A reference book – not casual reading novel.
rated it really liked it
Dec 29, 2014
Carole Krohn
rated it it was amazing
Apr 21, 2016
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Sep 07, 2009
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