The Classical Girl’s very casual “Top 10 classical ballets” list

Google “Top 10 classical ballets” or something similar, and you’ll find a whole slew of lists that, in truth, really don’t vary a whole lot. Some feature more contemporary ballets and include the works of Frederick Ashton, Kenneth MacMillan, George Balanchine. Others opt for the whimsical and light, like Coppélia and La Fille Mal Gardée. … Read more

10 reasons ballet dancers hate Black Swan

Interested in my ballet fiction? Check out the Ballet Theatre Chronicles (Off Balance, Outside the Limelight, Ballet Orphans) and the curiously connected A Dancer’s Guide to Africa. Just click on their titles! I hated Black Swan. Successful film that it was, I hated many things about it, mostly the way it depicted ballet dancers in a way … Read more

Ulyana Lopatkina and Her Swans

I discovered prima ballerina Ulyana Lopatkina two years ago through Ballerina, a 2006 documentary that is a must-see for any ballet student or enthusiast. It follows the careers of five extraordinary Mariinsky* ballerinas and the teaching institution that produced them, the prestigious Vaganova Academy, which auditions 3000 children annually for sixty places. The audition process … Read more