Last week I wrote about the unfortunate repercussions of the stigma around being a male ballet dancer, which keeps boys and men off the stage and out of the audience to the detriment of all.
Just days later, NPR's Stacy Nick story, "Ballet Programs Look For More Boys To Step Up To The Barre" echoed those sentiments. Not only do stigma and stereotypes discourage boys and men from participating, they also cause isolation and torment for many of those who dare to engage in the ballet world.
But the article also highlights the exceptional opportunities available for male dancers. Because of their relative scarcity, male dancers often receive intensified training, scholarships and college tuition, as well as big roles in productions and fast-tracked career opportunities.
Those opportunities require a serious commitment, however. Contrary to the notion that ballet is for "sissies," it's actually one of the most physically and psychologically demanding of pursuits. Colorado Ballet Academy ballet master John Gardner says, "You're going to find out in your training in ballet — if you've done sports before — that ballet's a lot more difficult."
Marin Rose, Artistic Chair, Board of Trustees