September 19, 2019 12:12 PM   Subscribe

In light of the recent controversy surrounding Lara Spencer's remarks about Prince George's love for ballet, it is particularly timely to note that for the first time in history, the National Ballet School of Canada will graduate a class of more young men than young women.
posted by jacquilynne (18 comments total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
(As you might imagine, you should not read the comments on that CBC story. Some of them are good, but some of them are so full of hate that ugh. I don't know why they even turned commenting on for this story. They had to know it would be a shitshow and they only turn commenting on for select stories so it's not like it would be unusual to turn it off.)
posted by jacquilynne at 12:56 PM on September 19, 2019 [2 favorites]

Awesome news! Dancing is for everyone.

Also, this seems like the right place to share the trailer for the world's only political dance thriller.
posted by grumpybear69 at 1:16 PM on September 19, 2019 [4 favorites]

Although there are some terrible comments attached to the article, they seem to come from only a couple of trolls posting repeatedly, and most are rightfully shit on by a fair number of less idiotic folks.

I knew a couple of dancers back in high school. One of them played on the same rugby team as me. Watching him spin and twist through a defensive line when he had the ball was pretty fucking awesome. Guy couldn't be touched.
posted by dazed_one at 1:16 PM on September 19, 2019 [7 favorites]

In Lara's defense, "Let's see how long that lasts" can apply to most kids trying any kind of new experience. Experience can equal experiment. It's how we learn and grow. I was forced to "experience" piano far, far longer than I was interested.
posted by KleenexMakesaVeryGoodHat at 1:24 PM on September 19, 2019 [2 favorites]

We don't really need to defend her statement.
posted by ChuraChura at 1:26 PM on September 19, 2019 [20 favorites]

Those of you who have met me probably have had the word “oafish” rise to mind. I would give a lot to have had my parents steer me at a tender age to practice that allowed me to move like Baryshnikov.
posted by ricochet biscuit at 1:33 PM on September 19, 2019 [7 favorites]

Some years ago two brothers enrolled in a local dance school. The older boy had a real interest in ballet and the younger was strongly encouraged by his soccer coach. At that time many coaches were aware of the strength and agility that the training fostered. (Source: I knew their mother)
posted by Botanizer at 2:03 PM on September 19, 2019

I don't think what she said is that horrible. Furthermore, I would not want to be judged on every last thing I said live on national television. Yes I know the career is her choice, but it must be challenging to put yourself out there like that every day. A bit of forgiveness and a lot less judgement goes a long way. It's a lesson I'm trying to teach myself and it's hard!
posted by KleenexMakesaVeryGoodHat at 2:31 PM on September 19, 2019 [1 favorite]

There is a great The Rock moment in the otherwise annoying (I have been forced to watch it repeatedly by my Rock-loving children) The Game Plan where his daughter's ballet teacher schools him on how athletic ballet is: youtube clip.
posted by dorothyisunderwood at 3:02 PM on September 19, 2019 [1 favorite]

I don't think that the person who contributed to the general cultural disparagement of boys and men in ballet is really the one who needs more generosity and kindness in this situation.
posted by ChuraChura at 3:34 PM on September 19, 2019 [16 favorites]

My younger son did dance from 4-15 (he's finally stopped taking dance this year). He hid this info from his friends throughout the entire time he danced because he was worried about being teased, or being seen as "different". While Lara Spencers comments are not the worse (I've heard truly terrible comments from other fathers at our school), words matter. And they could be the thing that turns a child away from dance, or any activity.
posted by greenhornet at 3:51 PM on September 19, 2019 [5 favorites]

Also, this seems like the right place to share the trailer for the world's only political dance thriller

Thank you for reminding me that I haven't dusted this one off in a while. Two of my favorite dancers, together in one movie. Cheezy AF, but who cares. The dancing is EVERYTHING!

I had to look Lara Spencer up. Girl should maybe think twice, then just shut up and go find videos of Nureyev, Baryshnikov, Sergei Polunin.
posted by MissySedai at 4:24 PM on September 19, 2019 [3 favorites]

I had an agency little brother who was freakishly physically talented and sometimes when I wasn't watching he would dance to whatever song in was in his head and he was just a fucking joy to watch. But if I noticed and was enthusiastic about his moves, he would shut down hard. Someone programmed him that dancing joyfully with zero abandon to the beat of your heart was something that boys just. didn't. do. I tried sneakily showing him some Janet Jackson videos from back in the day, but it didn't take.

Lara Spencer is spiritually adjacent to whoever put that idea in his head, so she can shut the fuck up.
posted by Sauce Trough at 5:10 PM on September 19, 2019 [8 favorites]

Dancers are athletes, full stop, some people just can’t grasp that because they’re stuck in a place where athletics means tribal zero-sum competition instead of human potential, much less expression.
posted by wildblueyonder at 6:48 PM on September 19, 2019 [3 favorites]

There is not nearly enough ballet in that Rock clip. Like, none! What, he couldn't do *any*?!?
posted by clew at 8:54 PM on September 19, 2019

I'm still waiting to hear Piers Morgan's terrible opinion on this before I Thanatos-snap all human life out of existence.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 6:15 AM on September 20, 2019

My 6-year-old son has been doing gymnastics since he was 2. He's been enrolled (at his request) in dance for musical theater, and hip-hop/urban dance, for the past two years. He also plays soccer and swims, and tried baseball last spring (that one didn't take). A few months ago, his hip-hop/urban teacher asked him if he'd like to try ballet, because of how he moves. He immediately said "Oh, no. That's just for girls," while standing in front of a large framed print of an extremely athletic-looking and very masculine-looking male ballet dancer.

"That's for girls" is not something he EVER would have got from our household, or from our friends, or from the dance school. Kiddo, husband, and I watch things like World of Dance together and talk about how awesome it is. But somehow, kid has it in his head, at the age of six, that "ballet is only for girls." I suppose this is accidentally reinforced at the dance school, because the ballet classes are packed full of tiny princesses from the age of 2, in pink sparkly tutus, dancing to cutesy music, rather than the more driving rhythms you tend to get in musical theater and urban/hip-hop dance.

We've perhaps got a long way to go as a culture.
posted by erst at 5:37 PM on September 20, 2019 [5 favorites]

The Rock isn't into ballet. He's into war chants!
posted by SPrintF at 9:23 AM on September 21, 2019

« Older Flying to conclusions   |   This man knew how to live. Newer »

This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments