There are many different types or styles of ballet including, but not limited to: Classical Ballet, Romantic Ballet, and Modern Dance. One school of thought is that there are schools in Europe where students will learn each type. It is important to note that most schools teach at least one type with others being optional lessons.
Ballet is considered to be one of the most physically demanding dance types in existence. The dancer must learn how to balance the body using very precise techniques called positions that will create specific lines and angles with their bodies. It is through this technique that dancers can create emotive compositions or dances which can delight audiences.
There are different types of ballet positions that dancers typically master. Some of these include:
– Plié (bent knees)
– Développé (developed, i.e. stretched out leg in front and behind the body, such as when a ballet dancer is en pointe)
– Rond de jambe (raised leg turning inward and outward)
– Grands jetés (large jumps forward or sideways)
– Battements (beats, which are small kicking motions)
– Relevé (leap with both feet leaving the ground; “demi-plie” is half of this motion).
To create special movements, the dancer must achieve a certain level of skill in one or more types of ballet positions.
It was Ninette de Valois who created the first school that delivered classical ballet training in England which became known as the Royal Ballet. Classical ballet is characterized by the use of positions and techniques to create beautiful lines with the body that express moods or emotions.
Romantic Ballet was created in France during the early 1800s. This style includes more drama than other types of ballet focusing on technical skill rather than cleanliness, fast movements, and fluidity. The romantic style is commonly expressed through partnering and improvisation.
Modern Dance was created by Isadora Duncan in Europe around 1875. In the early days, the dancer used it as a way to express themselves without traditional techniques or forms. However, in the modern-day, the movement is considered very fluid with emphasis on athleticism and dynamic body lines called shapes.
Ballet is typically performed to music that follows a strict composition of beats and rhythms. Dancers need to focus on the musicality of the piece as it will enhance their performance.
Here are some common types of music used during ballet performances:
– The Orchestra or Symphony contains instruments such as the flute, cello, piano, timpani, etc.
– The Ballet Suite is a collection of short dances (usually for ballet) that are performed one after another.
– A Piano Concerto features the piano as the major instrument with other instruments accompanying it such as the violin or organ.
– A Choral Work includes music that is sung by a group of people.
– A Cantata is an extended vocal work typically for chorus and orchestra or multiple soloists with instrumental accompaniment.