Monday, September 23, 2013


What is my posture doing in this picture? Why is my butt sticking out?
I have a love-hate thing with glissades. Well, actually, I don't love them at all but I do think that a series of glissades changée is one of the flirty-est steps there is. And a well-done glissade is simply beautiful. Oh, and they are one of the most common connecting steps in all of ballet so learning to do a good glissade is pretty important.

Unfortunately the difference between a crappy glissade and a beautiful one is about seven years of dedication. And I get to be the teacher during those years.

(Note: I love my job. I really do. It is a privilege and a joy. And involves a lot of glissades.)

My students are too young and inexperienced to recognize the difference between the glissades they are doing and the beautiful, amazing steps they could be doing in the future. That's okay--I will help them. Every single week. But that means we do glissades. Every single week. 

I think the kids are bored. They want to do fun, fancy things. They probably wonder why it seems like there is a glissade in every allegro. (Because there practically is.) I don't doubt that tonight at least one of them was thinking, "We know, Miss Chelsea. We've done this before." And it probably seems a little unreasonable of me to make them work on connecting steps instead of letting them run-run-run-LEAP to their little hearts' content. But they've gotten to the age where it's time to get serious. For those who really want to be ballerinas, we've got to put in the work. 

Tonight was a tough-love night. I'm lousy at tough love. Happy, sparkly, butterfly love? Totally my wheelhouse. But no one gets better without someone pushing them to do the hard stuff. And I care about my students, so I'm going to push them. This is just a dip. So yes, the next lesson plan contains more glissades.

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