Ballet Quotes

Quotes tagged as "ballet" Showing 1-30 of 110
“You have to love dancing to stick to it. It gives you nothing back, no manuscripts to store away, no paintings to show on walls and maybe hang in museums, no poems to be printed and sold, nothing but that single fleeting moment when you feel alive.

Merce Cunningham

“Respect your body. Eat well. Dance forever.”
Eliza Gaynor Minden

Erol Ozan
“Dancing is creating a sculpture that is visible only for a moment.”
Erol Ozan

“Real men don't lift weights, they lift women.”
Every male ballet dancer

“Let us take care of our Garden of Eden with the fragrance of its flowers and the oxygen of its sheltering trees and savor the fruits of each precious single moment ever since life can be a sparkling ballet expressing the beauties and values that enlighten and enrich us. ( "Why step out of nature?")”
Erik Pevernagie

Edgar Degas
“And even this heart of mine has something artificial. The dancers have sewn it into a bag of pink satin, pink satin slightly faded, like their dancing shoes.”
Edgar Degas

“Life can be a wonderful ballet, letting us express all the values we are living for if the sky of our imagination remains open to passion. ("A glimpse of the future")”
Erik Pevernagie

Stasia Ward Kehoe
“I feel his arm
Lightly
Over me.
He takes one of my outstretched hands.
Draws it beneath my stomach.

"One more time..."

This is not sex,
Not friendship.
Something
Strange
Special
In the stillness of his breath,
The waterlike way he moves.

He is making a dance.
We are making a dance.”
Stasia Ward Kehoe, Audition

Anton Chekhov
“I don’t understand anything about the ballet; all I know is that during the intervals the ballerinas stink like horses.”
Anton Chekhov

Ana Claudia Antunes
“True love is like little roses,
sweet, fragrant in small doses.”
Ana Claudia Antunes, Pierrot & Columbine

Stephen King
“But he had never seen Myrna in practice...never that close up. He had been impressed and a little frightened by the contrast between seeing ballet on stange, where everyone seemed to either glide or mince effortlessly on the tips of their pointes. and seeing it from less than five feet away, with harsh daylight pouring in the floor-to-ceiling windows and no music- only the choreographer rythmically clapping his hands and yelling harsh criticisms. No praise, only criticisms. Their faces ran with sweat. Their leotards were wet with sweat. The room, as large and airy as it way, stank of sweat. Sleek muscles trembled and fluttered on the nervous edge of exhaustion. Corded tendons stood out like insulated cables. Throbbing veins popped out on foreheads and necks. Except for the choreographer's clapping and angry, hectoring shouts, the only sounds were the thrup-thud of ballet dancers on pointe moving across the floor and harsh, agonized panting for breath. Jack had suddenly realized that these dancers were not just earning a living, they were killing themselves. Most of all he remembered their expressions- all that exhausted concentration, all that pain... but transcending the pain, or at least creeping around its edges, he had seen joy. Joy was unmistakably what that look was, and it scared Jack because it had seemed inexplicable.”
Stephen King, The Talisman

Anne Ursu
“It’s a plié. You do it on all the positions. It’s very good for dramatic moments.”
Anne Ursu, Breadcrumbs

“He can hum the music in his old man's quivering voice, but he prefers it in his head, where it lives on in violins and reedy winds. If he imagines it in rehearsal he can remember every step of his three-minute solo as if he had danced it only yesterday, but he knows, too, that one time, onstage in Berlin, he had not danced it as he had learned it; this much he knows but cannot recreate, could no recreate it even a moment after he had finished dancing it. While dancing he had felt blind to the stage and audience, deaf to the music. He had let his body do what it needed to do, free to expand and contract in space, to soar and spin. So, accordingly, when he tries to remember the way he danced it on stage, he cannot hear the music or feel his feet or get a sense of the audience. He is embryonic, momentarily cut off from the world around him. The three most important minutes of his life, the ones that determined his fate and future, are the three to which he cannot gain access, ever.”
Evan Fallenberg, When We Danced on Water

“Music and Dancing, not only give great pleasure but have the honour of depending on Mathematics, for they consist in number and in measure.....Therefore, whatever the old doctors may say, to employ oneself at all this is to be a Philosopher and a Mathematician.”
Charles Sorel

Paul    Taylor
“Classic Ballet,

Keep away, keep building your creaky fairy castles, keep cloning clones and meaningless manners, hang on to your beanstalk ballerinas and their midget male shadows, run yourself out of business with your tons of froufrou and costly clattery toe shoes that ruin all chances for illusions of lightness, keep on crowding the minds of blind balletomanes who prefer dainty poses to the eloquent strength of momentum, who have forgotten or never known the manings of gesture, who would nod their noses to barefoot embargos ("so grab me" spelt backwards). Continue to repolish your stiff technique and to ignore a public that hungers for something other than a bag of tricks and the empty-headedness of surface patterns.

Just keep it up, keep imitating yourself, and, , go grow your own dance makers. Come on, don't keep trying to filter modern ones through your so-safe extablishment. We're to be seen undiluted, undistorted, not absorbed by your hollow world like blood into a sponge.

Yours truly,
A Different Leaf on Our Family Tree”
Paul Taylor, Private Domain: An Autobiography

Amélie Nothomb
“Para bailar, hay que merecerlo. Bailar sobre un escenario y delante de público constituye la mayor de las felicidades. A decir verdad, incluso sin público, incluso sin escenario, bailar es el colmo de la embriaguez. Una alegría tan profunda justifica los sacrificios más crueles. La educación que os damos aquí tiende a presentar la danza como lo que es: no un medio sino una recompensa.”
Amélie Nothomb, The Book of Proper Names

Jilly Cooper
“I'm bored stiff by ballet. i can't bear those muscular white legs like unbaked plaited loaves, and I get quite hysterical every time one of the women sticks out her leg at right angles, and the man suddenly grabs it and walks round in a circle as though he were opening a tin.”
Jilly Cooper, Jolly Super Too
tags: ballet

“A major assumption that underlies this selection is that it is only within work that is progressive, experimental or avant-garde that staid, old-fashioned images and ideas about gender can be challenged and alternatives imagined. I have never seen a ballet performance that has not disappointed me.”
Ramsay Burt, The Male Dancer: Bodies, Spectacle and Sexuality

Karl Kristian Flores
“When you see the extent to which people try, like the tremors of a ballet dancer, or the intensity of a pianist, or a mural containing the details of tiny little people making up the background-- you see the vulnerable extension of our private selves. There is an element inside us and it wavers between beauty and madness. You know it when you see it, like a hyperactive atom bouncing in a tube. It is like trying, really trying, and when we do, we are in our most honest forms. When we reach, we expose the contents of the human spirit. The more often we see it spill, the more encouraged we are to go further. And we can go further than others, in joyous competition. After all, it is called the human race, no?”
Karl Kristian Flores, Can I Tell You Something?

“Always tell the absolute truth ...no matter how unbelievable!”
Michael K Dane

“Words, moreover, can get in the way of dancing. They signal self-conscious thought, and the moment they play through a dancer's mind her concentration and the way she responds physically to music risk changing. Words can distance a dancer from the music and from her own impulses, and make her movement appear remote and flat.”
Jennifer Homans, Apollo's Angels: A History of Ballet

“He dances until dawn and walks away from the ghosts. Into the light.”
AudreyHornesHeart, Flightless Bird

“Responding ot the need to represent French Canada in the company's offerings, Franca and Ambrose researched French-Canadian folk songs and arts and crafts, commissioned a score, on George Crum's recommendation, from Hector Gratton, and put together what was intended as a light and amusing ballet on folk themes. It was well-received outside Quebec, but met strong opposition in Montreal, where it was seen as the worst kind of tokenism as well as a slight to the true nature of Quebec culture. Paul Roussel, reviewing for Le Canada, called into question the validity of its inspiration. He suggested that, suitably revised, it might make an amusing trifle, but in its present form it could not lay claim to any Quebecois cultural authenticity.”
James Neufeld, Passion to Dance: The National Ballet of Canada

Brandy Colbert
“El ballet es una forma de arte tan universal y reconocible que la gente siempre cree que sabe de él más de lo que realmente sabe.”
Brandy Colbert, Pointe
tags: art, ballet

“The sea journey back was not without event. She was distraught, her nerves at a breaking point. She may have looked from the deck of the ship at those surging waves below. Maybe even for a moment have wished herself in their midst. Perhaps for once she danced Ondine in her troubled mind. It happily was not be. Tragic and banal as would have been that end to her story, Fate denied it as her destiny.”
Anton Dolin, olga spessivtzeva: The Sleeping Ballerina

“...maybe our work together is made more difficult because we are brother and sister... making us impatient with each other. Besides, Vaslav is, as always, unduly demanding with me... no different now that he is working on his own ballet, but just as he usually is for my dancing endeavors... But how much I am learning from him...”
Bronislava Nijinksa, Bronislava Nijinska: Early Memoirs

Karl Kristian Flores
“When you see the extent to which people try, like the tremors of a ballet dancer, or the intensity of a pianist, or a mural containing the details of tiny little people making up the background-- you see the vulnerable extension of our private selves. There is an element inside us and it wavers between beauty and madness. You know it when you see it, like a hyperactive atom bouncing in a tube. It is like trying, really trying, and when we do, we are in our most honest forms. When we reach, we expose the contents of the human spirit. And we can go further than others, in joyous competition. After all, it is called the human race, no?”
Karl Kristian Flores, Can I Tell You Something?

Emily Lapisardi
“I remember how we clung to our Russia even as she slipped through our fingers like so many grains of sand at the shore where we used to spend the summer. Through it all, I danced, I danced—I was young and impossibly strong. I am called Anastasiya—the springtime, new life. I have created myself again and again, as the phoenix rises from the ashes. But I grow tired. I could go back now, but for what? Everything I loved is gone. I have no country anymore. Our Russia is dead, her people are dead. Perhaps even the melting snows no longer smell the same. She lives within me, perhaps only within me. Those laughing faces, those poignant songs, they have floated up with the incense, disappearing from human recollection.
We were all so young!" -- from "Madame Anastasiya" by Emily Lapisardi (2020)”
Emily Lapisardi

“Ballet … was a system of movement as rigorous and complex as any language. Like Latin or ancient Greek, it had rules, conjugations, declensions. Its laws, moreover, were not arbitrary; they corresponded to the laws of nature. Getting it “right” was not a matter of opinion or tastes: ballet was a hard science with demonstrable physical facts. It was also, and just as appealingly, full of emotions and the feelings that come with music and movement...If the coordination and musicality, muscular impulse and timing were exactly right, the body would take over. I could let go. For all its rules and limits, [ballet is] an escape from the self. Being free.”
Jennifer Homans, Apollo's Angels: A History of Ballet
tags: ballet

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