Wednesday, February 04, 2009

Reflection on a Dancer's character

Been watching some ballet videos on Youtube... read some of the comments below those videos, and found an interesting note.

There was a ballet called Afternoon with a Faun by Jerome Robbins, and in it, a male and female dancer dance very closely with each other, they dance as though they were in love with each other... but according to Robbins, they are actually looking at mirror images of themselves, and all their feeling is poured into the mirror image instead of the person dancing with them.

Here's a quote from Wiki on how the ballet is staged: "A ballerina enters and they dance facing the audience as though looking into the mirrored wall of the studio. He kisses his partner on the cheek, and she bourrées out of the studio and off-stage. He returns to his initial supine position."

Apparently, he's claiming that dancers, most especially ballet dancers, are narcissistic and rely on the mirror image of themselves to feel beautiful and loved.

It is true that ballet dancers (as are other dancers) have a close relationship with the mirror because it helps reveal the perfection or the flaws in their own movements. On that point I'd have to agree, since I look in the mirror often to see if the position of my body and limbs look like how they're supposed to. And when they do, I can't help but feel self-satisfaction that I've done it.

But I don't know if I'd go so far as to say I love my mirror image more than I love another person.

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