The Ultimate Question

The title of this blog may be a tad misleading, but I do have an important question to ask.  After watching a video of the (divinely talented and gift to the ballet world from heaven) Svetlana Zakharova on YouTube, I wonder: What is the best and most correct way to do fouettes?  Is it by winding up  with a rond de jambe from front to side each time you complete the revolution, or, as Svetlana does it, to just open the leg to the side?

 

I was always taught to do the rond de jambe.  I feel that not only is it easier to get the momentum going to keep turning, it's also prettier than just kicking your leg out to the side.  However, as Pointe senior editor Jenny Stahl pointed out when I asked her about her thoughts on the matter, it is probably just a product of different thoughts on technique.  The way Russian ballerinas do it, she says, might be because it is their teachers' opinion that just opening the leg to the side looks cleaner, and may keep you from overturning.  In general, I believe American ballerinas do the rond de jambe.

 

What about you?  Fouettes are one of the hardest tricks to master, so what makes them easier for you?

Latest Posts


Pacific Northwest Ballet's Sarah-Gabrielle Ryan, photographed by Jayme Thornton for Pointe

The Radiant Sarah-Gabrielle Ryan: Why She's One to Watch at Pacific Northwest Ballet

Hollywood could make a movie about Sarah-Gabrielle Ryan's big break at Pacific Northwest Ballet.

It was November 2017, and the company was performing Crystal Pite's film-noir–inspired Plot Point, set to music by Bernard Hermann from Alfred Hitchcock's Psycho. Ryan, then a first-year corps member, originally was understudying the role of another dancer. But when principal Noelani Pantastico was injured in a car accident, Ryan was tapped to take over her role.

Keep reading SHOW LESS

#TBT: Maria Alexandrova, Maria Allash and Yevgeny Ivanchenko in "Swan Lake"

While not nearly as common as the pas de deux, the pas de trois is a frequent feature in classical ballets that poses its own unique challenges. The seamless braiding of three dancers, in which all can equally shine, is no easy feat. In this clip from 2002, the Bolshoi Ballet stars Maria Alexandrova and Maria Allash and Mariinsky Ballet principal Yevgeny Ivanchenko, achieve that synergy in this sumptuous pas de trois from Act I of Swan Lake.

Keep reading SHOW LESS
Yonah Acosta in Sin La Habana, Courtesy Miami Film Festival

The Miami Film Festival Is Streaming 2 Films Spotlighting Cuban Ballet Dancers, Including Yonah Acosta

Many ballet companies are sharing digital productions these days, but if you want to get your ballet fix on the silver screen, the Miami Film Festival has something for you—and you don't have to fly to Miami to see it! Two ballet-centric films, the drama Sin La Habana (Without Havana) and documentary Cuban Dancer, will be featured in theaters and virtually at the 38th annual Miami Film Festival, running March 5 to 14.

Keep reading SHOW LESS

Editors' Picks