What is your perception of male ballet dancers? Do you think they are effeminate, or not so much?
Some folks believe that male ballet dancers are effeminate because they assume (wrongly) that the male stands on his toes, like ballerinas, although they actually stand on the balls of their feet (demi-point), from time to time---or else flat on their feet. Then there are others who see the male ballet dancer as very athletic. Yet others feel that ballet is basically a "girl thing," consequently, this must mean that male ballet dancers are "girly." What is your perception of the male ballet dancer? Or.....what do you think is the general perception?
I think we are too eager to label something as "girly" or "manly." Doing ballet doesn't make a man any more effeminate than a girl being a mechanic makes her manly. These are all societal constructs.
No, I don't draw that conclusion and I am male. I see them as athletes in their own right. I think saying male ballet dancers are effeminate in any verbal characterization is kinda' a cop-out. It is a plea saying both I can't do that and importantly don't understand ballet.
Football is easier, even though it is in an odd sense is ballet. Who does not appreciate the moves of the running back dashing about on the stage constantly on tip toes. The wide receiver on tip toes leaning beyond the sideline to grasp the football scoring a touchdown. Maybe that is an odd way of looking at it. I dun'no . . .
Fabulous answer, tsmog! Actually, I hear that ballet dancers are the strongest athletes only 2nd to football players---and that football players are taught some ballet for agility. Indeed, there are times when football looks like a dance.
I watched John Travolta in Staying Alive the other night. The last act is amazing seen at this link https://youtu.be/ynrfz14y8zY This is dance & not ballet per se, yet parallels. Amazing athleticism, story interpretation & semblance of Greek
Thank you, Tim. I'll watch it. I always loved Travolta's solo dance in that movie.
From the point of view of athletics the ballet dancer, whether male or female, is stronger and more "honed" than the footballer. Also more stamina I suspect.
The physical pain they must bear in order to achieve perfection is unimaginable.
The male ballet dancer evokes the masculine role in every movement. Not feminine.
Finally, if any man feels uncomfortable about seeing another man as effeminate, then some personal insearching would be necessary.
Definitely more honed, Alan. I think some males just don't know anything about ballet, so I suppose they equate it with tippy toes. However, the male ballet dancer must always evoke highly masculine roles, like a prince or warrior, as you mentioned.
I think both male and female ballet dancers are tremendous athletes who wear down and wear out their bodies for our entertainment and cultural enrichment. And after all of that, male ballet dancers have to put up with this "girly" talk, in this day and age!
What is this the fifties? The 1850s?
LOL! Good point about the 50's. Back in the day, dancers sometimes destroyed their bodies, especially ballerinas, but nowadays, they're much smarter. Nevertheless, the strain on their bodies is tremendous. They are superb athletes, as you know!
In the old days, men performed all the ballet parts - female as well as male. To this day, I understand professional football players study ballet to make themselves more flexible and less prone to injuries.
Today, ballet is associated with ultimate femininity. It is the fantasy of most little girls. I had that fantasy myself - until I actually took lessons. I found out the daintier they look, the tougher they really are!
Ultimately, I didn't have the drive it took to get any good. Perhaps I would have, if I'd had a more realistic vision of it. If I were my older sister, I would have coached myself before my first class, and made myself stick to it. As it is, I'm glad I took classes, because they helped me tremendously with good posture today (I've never had back or knee trouble!).
P.S. how many men are strong enough to hold a woman like this???
Interesting personal background story. Appreciate your sharing, Yoleen. I knew the things you mentioned in the first paragraph. It's interesting stuff. Personally, I think male ballet dancers are superb male specimens. They're incredibly strong.
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