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Ballet technique refers to the method by which ballet steps are performed or taught. Technique may also refer more generally to a dancer's training and ability. The core technique of ballet has only minor regional variations globally. Various training methods have been devised, these produce a different physicality of performance and aesthetic results. Ballet (especially classical ballet) puts great emphasis on the method and execution of movement.

Ballet technique can refer to the foundational principles and steps on which ballet steps are built. These foundational principles and steps include "pulling up" (a popular term used to describe proper posture and lifting the muscles so as to increase turnout, quantity and quality of turns, and proper alignment), posture, pointing the toe, and flexibility. Ballet is the most popular dance among the girls.

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Photo of Emma Livry, c. 1860
Emma Livry (September 24, 1842 – July 26, 1863) was one of the last ballerinas of the Romantic ballet era, and a protégée of Marie Taglioni. She perished from burn injuries when her costume caught fire during a performance rehearsal.

Emma studied dancing while young and attended the Paris Opera School. She made her debut at age sixteen with the Paris Opera as the sylph in La Sylphide. Her talent brought her fame and she became a widely respected ballerina.

Marie Taglioni noticed her during one of her performances and immediately took a liking to the girl, becoming her mentor. Marie choreographed for Emma in the ballet Le Papillon, a piece by Jacques Offenbach that was especially created just for Emma.

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Tutu by Edgar Degas
Credit: Tutu by Edgar Degas

A ballet tutu is a skirt worn as a costume in a ballet performance, often with attached bodice. It might be single layer, hanging down, or multiple layers starched and strutting out.

Did you know?

Billy Elliot the Musical is a stage musical with music and lyrics by Sir Elton John. It began as a movie of the same title in 2000. The story is set in Durham, England during the 1980s miners strike. Billy (the son of a miner) has to undergo various hardships after discovering a love of dance. He eventually wins a place at the Royal Ballet School and the film ends with a view into the future, where we see the adult Billy (Adam Cooper) performing the lead role in Matthew Bourne's production of the ballet Swan Lake.

The stage musical opened in 2005 at the Victoria Palace Theatre in London's West End, costing an estimated £5.5 million. An Australian production opened at the Capitol Theatre, Sydney in 2007 and a Broadway production opened at the Imperial Theatre, New York City in 2008. A new production is planned in Seoul, South Korea. In London, the dream sequence in Act II features Barnaby Meredith, a graduate of the Royal Ballet School, who danced with Dutch National Ballet prior to joining the cast of the musical. The New York production features Stephen Hanna of the New York City Ballet.


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