Boys and Ballet - The Real Men at the Bar(re)
For most young boys who take ballet classes, dancing is a passion they may or may not have had to fight for depending on their parents, peers and even teachers at their academic school, but luckily every day society is becoming more enlighted about male ballet students. Society is beginning to admire their strength, athleticism, their work ethic and the vital role they play in every great dance performance we see.
In the past, many boys never dared to take ballet classes as they were too afraid of being bullied, but today it is more often the adults who question boys taking ballet classes, usually out of sheer ignorance. There are sadly still some mums and dads who might question the future sexuality of a male ballet student, but luckily this way of thinking is slowly dying out and nowadays the majority of parents are in awe of the amazing feats that the boys pull off in daily class and performances.
Male ballet dancers have been tested against professional sportsmen, and the results showed that the dancers were physically much fitter and had better stamina than their sporting counterparts, and of course lets not forget that male dancers have to look elegant, be on time with the music, act and portray complex characters - all things that a sportsman doesn't need to cope with.
Many professional sports men take some form of ballet class for a variety of reasons and ballet, in particular, has been used in the training of professional boxers, rugby and football players, ice skaters, gymnasts, and various martial arts fighters. I have even once seen a group of professional soldiers taking a ballet class for stamina, body agility and quickness.
Male dance students can also enjoy ballet as a hobby that will give them self confidence and self esteem, strength, fitness, flexiblity, focus, concentration, and, of course, the opportunity to be in a room full of beautiful girls!
Male dancers need to look lean and athletic as they often dance the main parts of princes, warriors, gladiators, and pirates. They also have to be extremely strong and be able to control this strength in order to lift the girls in a seemingly effortless manner.
The girls have to put their entire trust in their male partner so the boys need to work on their strength carefully, step by step. Pas de Deux classes are essential in the serious training of young male dancers. We are so fotunate, at The Dance Centre Peregian Springs, to have professional male teachers and weekly Pas de Deux classes for our male students.
Our advise to parents of male students serious about a career in dance is that they must have access to highly qualified ex-professional male dancers who teach ballet, and to attend regular Pas de Deux classes to ensure a successful future of a ballet dancer.
No tights needed for male ballet students, although older male ballet students often prefer to wear tights that show their muscles!