Abstract Ballet: A ballet
without a plot or story.
Adage, Adagio: [Italian ad
agio: "at ease"; the musical
direction, adagio, means "slow."]. Slow
movement with emphasis on sustained positions and on
balance. The principal steps of adagio are pliè, dèveloppè,
rand fouettè en tourant, degage, grand rond de jambe,
rond de jamb en l’air, coupes, battement tendu,
attitude, arabesque, pirouettes and more. Most
classical pas de deux start with adagio and end with
Ailes de pigeon:[Means
“pigeon’s wings”]. The dancer
performs a cabriole devant, then the legs change and
beat again, then change again before the dancer lands
on the leg he jumped on, leaving the other leg
extended in the air. Also known as “pistolet”.
Air, en l’: In the air.
Indicates that the movement is to be made in the air
versus on the ground such as rond de jamb en l’air.
Alignment: The single most
important thing in the foundation of technique. The
body must be aligned to perform ballet correctly and
"happy"; in music,
"fast"]. Brisk and lively movement including
all steps of elevation such as entrechat, cabrile,
assemble, jetè - basically jumps and turns. The
majority of ballet dancing is allegro - with the most
important qualities being lightness, smoothness and
ballon. Usually divided into petit
["little"] allegro and grand
["elongated"]. Extended – outstretched.
["Arabic"]. A position with one leg
stretched straight out to the back while turned out
and keeping the upper body straight and lifted. One
arm usually is stretched out to the front in fourth,
fifth or an open position.
[“backward”]. A direction for the execution of a
step. This word is used to indicate that the step is
executed moving away from the audience.
or joined together"]. A step in which the working
foot slides well along the ground before being swept
into the air. As the foot goes into the air the dancer
pushes off the ground with the supporting leg
extending the toes – then both legs come together to
the ground simultaneously into fifth position.
["attitude"]. A position as with the
arabesque, where the working leg is raised. But unlike
the arabesque, it is bent, not straight, and, also
unlike the arabesque, it can be done to the front, the
side, or the back. The bent knee is lifted at an angle
of ninety degrees and well turned out so that the knee
is higher than the foot.
Avant, en: [“forward”].
A direction for the execution of a step used to
indicate that the given step is executed forward
toward the audience.
["rocking"]. A waltz
step shifting the weight from one foot to the other.
For a balancé to the right, start in fifth position.
On count of 1-2-3, right foot goes out to the side and
the weight is transferred to it (1). Immediately bring
left foot behind right and and transfer the weight to
the ball of the left foot while rising up on it (2).
Put your weight back on the right foot flat on the
floor (not raised up) (3). A balancé to one side is
almost always followed by a balancé to the other
side. Balancés can also be done to the front and back
Balançoire: [“like a
seesaw”]. This term is applied to the grand
battement when executed with a continuous swinging
motion through the first position to the fourth
position front and back. The dancer swings the working
leg vigorously back and forth; balançoires do not
require that the body be held straight.
Ballerina: [Female dancer].
A principle female dancer in the company; an
outstanding soloist given title roles.
Ballerina assoluta, prima:
[“first ballerina absolute”]. This is the main
dancing ballerina who is given all classical title
roles over any soloist. A name in the company that
draws an audience.
["balloon"]. The appearance of
weightlessness and of being airborne. A dancer is said
to have ballon if (s)he seems to be in the air
constantly with only momentary contact with the floor.
["ball-like"]. The dancer springs into the
air, simultaneously executing a battement, then lands
in demi-pliè with the working foot sur le cou-de-pied..
Can be done in many different directions.
["tossed"]. A jump. Begin in 5th, right leg
front. Spring straight upward with both legs held
tightly together, as the body begins to tilt slightly
backward at the apex of the jump. The body lands on
the left foot while the right is thrown open to the
front. Repeat backwards, with a slight tilt to the
front at the apex of the jump. The French School terms
this step “jetè bateau”.
1. The railing, about waist high, along the wall of a
studio. Used by dancers as for steadying themselves in
the first part of a class. 2. The first part of ballet
class, consisting of exercises done with the aid of
Bas, en: [“low”]. Used
to indicate a low position of the arms.
["beating"]. A generic term for various
movements in which the leg is extended and then
returned. See grand battement and petit battement.
This is also one of those words (like pas and temps)
that are frequently omitted and understood; thus, for
example, frappé is short for battement frappé, etc.
In this list, look under the second word (e.g.,, under
frappé, not under battement frappé. The only
exception to this is battement tendu.
steps]. A collective term meaning the entire
vocabulary of beats. Any movement in which the legs
beat together or one leg beats against the other.
Battu: [“beaten”]. Any
step embellished with a beat.
Brisè: [“broken, breaking”]. A small
beating step in which the movement is broken. It
starts on one or two feet and ends on one or two feet.
Fundamentally, a brisè is an assemble beaten and
traveled. The working leg brushes from the fifth
position to the second so that the point of the foot
is a few inches off the ground and beats in front of
or behind the other leg which has come to meet it;
then both feet return to the ground at the same time
in demi-pliè fifth position.
Cabriole: [“caper”]. A step of elevation in
which the extended legs are beaten in the air. The
working leg is thrust into the air and the underneath
leg follows and beats against the first leg sending it
higher. The landing is made on the underneath leg.
Cambré: ["bent"]. A bend from the
waist in any direction, but especially forward or
Chaînés: [“chains, links”]. A series of
rapid turns on half or full point with the legs in a
tight first position, rotating a half turn on one foot
and the other half on the other foot. Done one after
the other so they're "chained" together.
Changement: ["change of the feet"]. A
jump, straight up, starting from fifth position with
one foot in front and landing in fifth position with
the other foot in front.
Changer, sans: [“without change”].
Indicates that a step is done with the feet remaining
in the same relative position.
Chassé: ["chased"]. A gliding step.
The working leg slides out; put weight on working leg
and draw other leg along floor to it. One foot
literally chases the other in a graceful sideways
gallop like step.
Ciseaux: ["scissors"]. Opening the
legs, like the blades of a pair of scissors, to a wide
second position sur les pointes; or may be jumped en
l’air. Not to be confused with sissonne.
Cloche, en: [“like a bell”]. Refers to
grand battements executed continuously devant and
derrière through the first position.
Collè: [“Adhering, glued”]. Both legs are
kept tightly together in mid-air in a temps sauté.
Contretemps: [“counter beating”]. A
compound step consisting of coupè dessous, chasse
efface en avant, fermè, temps levè and chasse passé
croisè en avant. It is a very useful step for
traveling to the side.
Combination: [“combination”]. A series of
steps linked together, usually as an exercise in
Corps de ballet: [“body of the ballet”].
Dancers who do not appear as soloists.
Corps de Ballet
Cou-de-pied, sur le: ["on the neck of the
foot"]. A foot is sur le cou-de-pied if it is
placed on the the calf just above the ankle. In the
Russian school, the foot is actually wrapped around
the ankle, with the heel forward and the toes back. It
may be placed on the front of the calf in this
position, at the side, or in back. The back position
is sometimes called, incorrectly, coupé.
Coupé: ["cut"]. A small intermediary
step done as a preparation for some other step.
Couru: [“running”]. A graceful ballet
Croisé: ["crossed"]. A position on
stage in which the dancer faces one of the front
corners with the legs crossed. In croisé devant, the
downstage leg is in fourth position to the front; in
croisé derrière, the upstage leg is in fourth
position to the back.
Croix, en: ["in (the form of) a
cross"]. Usually applied to exercises at the
barre: the exercise is done first with the working leg
moving to the front, then to the side, then to the
back, and then to the (same) side again.
Danseur: [“male dancer”].
Dèboitè: [disjointed”]. A term applied to a
emboitè sur les pointes executed on arrière. They
travel backward, the front swishing out and closing at
Dèboulès: [“rolling like a ball”]. A
series of demi-tours executed alternately on each foot
moving forward in a single direction.
Dedans, en: ["inward"]. Used to
describe motion toward the front of the body. In a
pirouette en dedans, the dancer turns so the raised
leg rotates toward the front. In a rond de jambe en
dedans, the working leg moves in a half-circle from
the back toward the front.
Dégagé: ["disengaged"]. A movement
or position in which the working leg is lifted off the
floor. It is the pointing of the foot in an open
position with a fully arched instep. There is no
transfer of weight.
Dehors, en: ["outward"]. Used to
describe motion away from the front of the body. In a
pirouette en dehors, the dancer turns so the raised
leg rotates away from the front. In a rond de jambe en
dehors, the working leg moves in a half-circle away
from the front toward the back.
Demi-pliè: [“half bend of the knees”]. All
steps of elevation begin and end with a demi-pliè.
Derrière: ["behind"]. Directed
behind the body. The reference of derrière implies
that the working foot is closed at the back.
Dessous: ["under"]. Indicates that
the working foot passes behind the supporting foot.
Dessus: ["over"]. Indicates that the
working foot passes in front the supporting foot.
Détourné ["turned aside"]. A smooth
turn made by pivoting on the toes in relevé.
Devant: ["ahead"]. Directed in front
of the body.
Developpé: ["developed"]. A movement
in which the working leg is drawn up to the knee of
the supporting leg and from there smoothly out to a
position in the air, usually at 90 degrees (i.e.,
parallel to the floor).
Diagonale, en: [‘in a diagonal’]. Indicates
that a step is done in a diagonal direction.
ècarté: ["separated"]. A position
on stage in which the dancer faces one of the front
corners with the working leg in second position,
either on or off the floor. The body is tilted
slightly away from the working leg. The arm on the
side of the working leg is raised; the arm on the side
of the supporting leg is in second. If the working leg
and raised arm are downstage (toward the audience),
this is écarté devant; if they are upstage, this is
échappé: ["escaped"]. A movement in
which the legs move from fifth position out to second
position or, occasionally, to fourth position.
efface: ["effaced"]. A position on
stage in which the dancer faces one of the downstage
corners with the legs crossed, upstage leg forward.
The downstage arm is usually raised in this position,
so that the face is shaded, or effaced; hence the
élancer: ["to dart"]. One of the
seven movements in dance (see movements.
eleve: [“elevated”]. Rising to pointe or
demi-pointe without plie.
emboité: ["boxed"]. A jump. Start in
5th; assume the right leg is in front. Jump up, bend
the right leg to 45 degrees. Land on the right foot
with the left leg slightly bent and the left foot in
front of the right ankle. The feet fit closely
together, like a lid on a box; hence the name. Usually
repeated to the other side: jump off right foot onto
the left and land with right foot in front of the left
ankle. This movement is often done while turning and
en face: ["facing"]. A position on
stage facing directly forward, toward the audience.
en l'air: ["in the air"]. Used to
describe movements in which the working leg is raised
a considerable distance off the ground. Antonym:
enchaînement: ["chaining"]. A series
of steps linked (chained) together.
entrechat: ["braided, interwoven"]. A
jump in which the dancer's legs cross each other--from
fifth in front to fifth in back--several times in the
air. The number of crossings is indicated by a number
after the word, and each crossing is counted twice
(once for going out from fifth and once for returning
to fifth). In even-numbered entrechats, the dancer
lands on both feet, in fifth. In odd- numbered ones,
the dancer lands with one foot sur le cou-de-pied. For
example, in entrechat quatre the dancer starts in
fifth position. If the right foot is in front, he
jumps, changes his feet to left foot in front and
back, and lands with the right foot in front again. (I
suppose you could call a simple changement an
entrechat deux, but I've never heard this.)
enveloppe: ["Enveloped"]. A rotation
of the body turning en dedans on the supporting leg
while the other leg envelopes or circles it. It is
used as a preparation for the execution of the
pirouette and steps like jete or chasse en tourant.
Rotation of the shoulders and head (relative to the
hips) to add beauty or expressiveness to a pose, step,
étendre: ["to stretch"]. One of the
seven movements in dance (see movements.
extension: [“extendend”]. The ability to
raise the working leg high in the air. Good extension
comes from a combination of inborn flexibility and
face, de: [“in front, full face”]. A
position or step executed facing the audience.
failli: ["giving way"]. A fleeting
movement done on one count. 5th position, croisè.
Demi-plié, jump up vertically, feet together. Turn
the body efface in the air. The body is lowered into
demi-plié on the right foot, while the left leg,
fully extended, is opened to 45 degrees in effacé
back. Without hesitation, the left foot glides through
first position and ends in croisé in demi-plié.
ferme: [“closed”]. Indicated that both feet
are in a closed position whether at the beginning or
end of a step.
finger turns: These are turns where the girl
partner is supported by the boy with his arms in such
a way that she cups his fingers above her while
stopping her turns with his other supporting arm. She
can do any static turns like a series of pirouettes or
fish dive: This is a lift position between a
male and female partner. This lift can be done above
the head (for the male) or as a lower horizontal lift.
fondu: ["sinking down"]. Any movement
that lowers the body by bending one leg. In a plié,
both legs support the body; in a fondu, only one leg
supports the body.
fouetté ["whipped"]. A turn in which
a whipping motion of the working leg makes the body go
round. Usually but not always done en dehors, which is
the description that follows. The working leg opens to
2nd position at 45 degrees. The working leg whips in
behind the calf of the supporting leg, while the arms
come in, the body turns en dehors, and the supporting
leg rises to releve. Quickly, the working foot is
brought to the front of the calf and is opened to 2nd
at 45 degrees while the working foot is lowered into
demi-plié. While in this position, the arms open to
second in preparation for a repeat of the movement.
When you hear of "32 fouettés" in Swan Lake
or some other ballet, this is what they mean.
frappè: ["struck"], in full,
battement frappé, "struck beat". Working
foot rests lightly on the ankle of the supporting
foot. Throw the working leg forcefully out to a dégagé
position so that it strikes the floor 1/3 of the way
out. Hold the leg out as long as possible, returning
it to its initial position at the last moment.
(Russian frappés start in tendu, darting to the
supporting leg and back out again.) Can be done to the
front, side, or back.
glissade: ["glide"]. A connecting
step. Start in plié; move the working foot out to
pointe tendu; then move onto that leg, closing the
left foot and landing in plié. This stap is a gliding
jump from one foot to the other that can be done in
grand battement: ["big beat"]. A
controlled leg lift in which the working leg is raised
as high as possible while keeping the rest of the body
grand battement en cloche: ["grand
battement like a bell"]. A controlled leg lift in
which the leg swings continually between fourth
position front attitude and fourth position in back
attitude, while the body is held aligned and in good
grand jeté: ["big thrown (step)"]. A
long horizontal jump, usually forward, starting from
one leg and landing on the other. In the middle of the
jump, the dancer may be doing a split in midair. This
is a grand jump that you will see in most grand
finales (see photo).
haut, en: ["high"]. This term is used
to indicate a high position of the arms such as 5th
position which is above the head.
Incliné: ["inclined"]. This is to
indicate an addition inclination of a step that
requires extension; for example, “arabesquè
incline” (which is pretty much a penchè).
jeté: ["thrown"]. A jump from one
foot to the other foot, throwing the working leg out.
Basically this is used in petit allegro quite often.
One foot brushes out and jumps off the ground as the
dancer lands on her other foot in b+.
jumps:. There are a variety of jumps in the
ballet vocabulary. Jumps have been classified as
follows: (1) from both feet to both feet (e.g.
changements) (2) from both feet to one foot (e.g.
sissonnes); (3) from one foot to both feet (e.g.,
assemblés); (4) from one foot to the same foot (e.g.,
temps levés); (5) from one foot to the other foot
labanotation: This is a system of dance
notation invented by Rudolf von Laban. Many ballets
have been notated and compiled in a library.
leotard: a form fitting stretch material bodice
for dancers to wear during exercise.
levé, temps Time raised or raising movement
tempo; a faster tempo for dancers to work to.
lyrical dancing: A poetic style of dancing with
a lovely, flowing quality.
milieu, au: In the middle or center of the
floor as in "center practice".
movements: Early in ballet history some masters
analyzed all ballet movements into seven basic
categories. These are: (1) pliè, to bend; (2) étendre,
to stretch; (s) relevè, to rise; (3) sautè, to leap;
(4) élancer, to dart; (5) glissadè, to glide; and
(6) tourner, to turn.
minuet: A dance in 3/4 time introduced in the
notation: There is no universally accepted
system of recording the choreography of ballets
although many systems of dance notation have been
opposition: A movement (or position) of the
arms in opposite direction to movement (or position)
of the legs; as we move our arms when we walk.
Opposing limb movement.
pas: ["A step"]. Many of the common
names of steps in ballet are adjectives (or
participles) instead of nouns; these names have the
word "pas" understood: thus, for example,
"coupé" (which everybody says) is actually
short for "pas coupé" ["cut
step"] (which nobody says). Also used to refer to
a dance, as pas de deux, a dance for two; pas de
quatre, a dance for four.
pas de basque: ["Basque step"]. A
position starting in fifth position which goes into a
demi-plié, then the working foot glides forward in
croisé and continues with a demi rond de jambe en
dehors to the side, while the other foot remains in
plié. A small jump occurs onto the working foot in
demi-plié. The other foot now glides through 1st
position into croisé forward. On the final count, the
weight is transferred to the other foot and a small
jump is made to bring the feet together where the left
one was placed. The movement finishes in 5th croisé.
Best to have a live demonstration of this one! Words
can’t explain what the body does…
pas de bourrée: ["bourrée step,"
the bourrée being an old folk dance]. This term is
one of the simplest connecting steps, used to link
other steps in a combination. The most common form is
probably the pas de bourrée dessous. It is a gliding
movement by a dancer on pointe consisting of many very
small steps taken with the feet close together. When a
dancer uses bourrée as a verb ("Then you bourrée
downstage"), she usually means pas de bourrée
couru. This is what the “Dying Swan” does a lot of
in Swan Lake, it is intended for pointe.
pas de chat: ["step of the cat"]. A
basic jump that starts with a demi-pliè in fifth, to
a leap off of one leg and both legs bend in the air
– one after the other to land back in fifth position
demi pliè. In the famous dance in Swan Lake in which
the four cygnets dance with interlaced arms, they do
sixteen pas de chat. It’s a common connection step
in basic ballet.
pas de cheval: ["step of the horse"].
Starting with the working leg in pointe tendu, draw it
along the floor back to the supporting leg; then,
without pausing, move it up to cou-de-pied and back
out to pointe tendu in a small developpé. The step
resembles the pawing of a horse. It is quick and
passé: ["passed"]. A movement in
which the pointed foot of the working leg is made to
pass the knee of the supporting leg. Basically you
start with your working foot in front and end with it
behind – or vice versa. It is a very common ballet
move at the barre and used to change which foot will
be the working foot.
penché: ["leaning"]. An extreme
arabesque in which the body stays lifted and extended,
but the back leg goes up and out as far as possible
bringing the arms to almost touch the ground (if the
ballerina has that sort of extension and flexibilty).
petit battement: ["little beat"].
This is an exercise for speed and agility in the lower
legs. The working leg starts sur le cou-de-pied and
beats front to back repeatedly to the music then ends
on the opposite side of the leg from where it started.
The knee and thigh of the working leg stay in the same
place and do not move during the exercise.
petit jeté: ["little jump"]. A small
jump used in petit allegro often. Brush the working
foot out, hop off the supporting leg, and land on the
working foot with the other foot sur le cou-de-pied
behind. Can be done to the front, the side, or the
pirouette: ["spin"]. A controlled 180
degree turn on one leg. The dancer usually turns more
than once. The raised leg is most commonly held in rétiré,
but pirouettes with the leg in other positions are not
uncommon. If the direction of the turn rotates the
raised leg away from the front of the body, the
pirouette is en dehors; if it rotates the leg toward
the front, it is en dedans. The dancer spots (see
"spotting") in order to avoid becoming
disoriented. Pirouettes are usually fast, but
supported pirouettes, in which a partner steadies the
soloist, may be done very slowly.
placement: Roughly, alignment of the body.
Becoming properly placed means learning to stand up
straight, with hips level and even, shoulders open but
relaxed and centered over the hips, pelvis straight
(neither protruding nor tucked under), back straight,
head up, weight centered evenly between the feet. This
posture is frequently described as "pulled
up," but it is also a relaxed posture; you aren't
tensed up like a soldier standing at attention. (A
teacher once said you should imagine that you are
suspended by a thread attached to the top of your
head. This suggests both the "pulled-up" and
relaxed aspects of good ballet posture.) And as you
dance, you seek to maintain this posture except when
the step requires something different, like épaulement,
or like the slight forward arch of the spine that
accompanies an arabesque.
plié: ["bent"]. Knee bends, done
with the legs turned out from the hips. It is usually
the first exercise in a ballet class. Demi-plié
["half-bent"] is a shallow bend (in all
positions but second, as far down as you can go
without lifting the heels off the floor); grand plié
["big plié"] is a deep bend, down to where
the thighs are almost horizontal. In all positions
except second, the heels release from the floor in a
grand plié. A pliè is the prelude and finish of
every jump. It is one of the most important moves in
the ballet vocabulary and if it is not executed
properly it can cause injury to the knees, ankles and
pointe: ["point"]. The point or
extension of the foot from the body out through the
toes. A demi-pointe refers to how far the heel is
raised off the floor in a relevé. Sur les pointes, or
"on pointe," is on the tips of the toes
literally in pointe shoes. Children should not be
allowed to go on pointe until the bones of their feet
are fully developed. This typically is allowed at
about the age of 11 or 12 when the bones are ossified.
pointe tendu: ["stretched point (of the
foot)"]. A position in which the working leg is
stretched straight out in any direction with only the
tip of the foot touching the floor.
port de bras: ["carriage of the
arms"]. A movement or position of the arms. Every
ballet class has a port de bras section of barre. It
is the upper body carriage while executing lower body
steps. It makes steps look effortless and graceful
when done correctly. A grand port de bras is a
circular bend, either toward the barre, then down,
then up away from the barre, and then backward and
back toward the barre: or the same thing in the
promenade: ["walk"]. A balanced pivot
turn in which the dancer moves slowly around by
shifting the heel of the supporting leg. The rest of
the body may be in arabesque or attitude. In a
supported promenade, the partner turns the soloist.
quatrième: ["fourth"]. Fourth
position. (See feet, positions of and arms, positions
quatrième, à la: ["in the fourth"].
À la quatrième devant is with the working leg
stretched out to the front; à la quatrième derrière
is with the working leg stretched to the back.
relevé: ["raised"]. A movement in
which the heels are raised off the floor. The rise may
be smooth or aided by a slight spring, depending on
the school. A dancer in such a position is said to be
"in relevé” or “on pointe”.
retiré: ["withdrawn"]. A position in
which the working foot is drawn up to the knee of the
supporting leg usually while the other leg is in
rond de jambe: ["circular movement of the
leg"]. A movement in which the working leg comes
up to retire and circles in a circular motion. May be
done with the working foot on the floor or in the air.
In a rond de jambe en dehors the leg moves outward and
ends by passing back down the leg into fifth. A
wonderful exercise for turnout. In a rond de jambe en
dedans ("inward"), the direction of movement
is reversed. In a demi rond de jambe, the working leg
goes only half-way around, stopping in second
position. A grand rond de jambe, is executed with the
supporting leg in plié. A rond de jambe en l'air
("in the air") is done with the working leg
raised off the floor, frequently at an angle of 90
degrees (parallel to the floor).
seconde, à la: ["in second"]. A
position that means out to the side.
sissonne: [Named for its inventor]. A basic
sisonne is a jump from two feet into a scissor action
jump into the air - with one leg higher then the other
landing back on two feet. There are many types of
sissone ranging from petit jumps to grand jumps and
they can be done in any direction.
soubresaut: ["sudden leap"]. A jump
from both feet to both feet. Beginning in 5th croisé,
the feet push off the floor so that the body pushes
forward with feet pointed and legs together. Before
the jump, the body inclines forward, and then during
the jump bends forcefully back, so that the legs
remain at the back. The movement ends in 5th croisé.
The arms are free and depend only on the design of
what is being sought after; when studying, they
usually begin in preparatory, come up to first during
the jump, and end in preparatory again.
sous-sus: ["under-over"] (or sus-sous
["over-under"]). A relevé in a tight fifth
position with one foot almost on top of the other.
soutenu: ["sustained"]. Performed
smoothly and slowly as a crossed leg turn up onto
pointe. It starts from 5th position where the working
leg is taken out to the front, 2nd position, or to the
back, while the supporting leg is lowers to demi-plié,
then the supporting leg rises to demi or full pointe
while the working leg is drawn into it, ending in a
tight sus-sous position.
spotting: A technique used to avoid
disorientation during turns. Basically the dancer
spots an object or area of the room or stage and as
she turns she catches glimpse of that same area and
focuses. This is the only way to do many turns without
sur le cou-de-pied: A foot is sur le cou-de-pied
if it is placed on the the calf just above the ankle.
temps: This means time, or tempo pertaining to
music which dictates the movement level of the ballet
class or live ballet performance.
temps levé: ["raised movement"].
Temps levé is the very simplest jump from one foot
onto the same foot with the other foot raised.
temps lié: ["joined movement"]. This
is a term for a whole series of conventionally
connected movements executed in the center of the
room, often during an adagio. However, it is also the
term for an independent form of a step.
tendu: ["stretched"]. This is a very
basic barre movement that is used commonly in ballet
movement. The tendu (same as battement tendu) is when
a dancer pointes out extending out starting from her
torso throughout her toes.
terre-à-terre: ["ground to ground"].
Used to describe steps in which the dancer's feet do
not leave the floor.
travesti, en: ["in disguise"]. Of a
female dancer: dancing a male role in a man's costume;
of a male dancer: dancing a female role in a woman's
turnout: The foundation of ballet. A stance in
which the legs are rotated outward from the hips so
that the knees (and feet) point in opposite
directions. A dancer adopting this position is said to
be "turned out." The ideal, turnout is 90
degrees. Forcing the feet and letting everything else
follow puts severe strain on the joints, especially
the knees, and defeats the purpose of turnout, which
is to rotate the thigh bone to permit greater
extension, especially to the side. Doing this
incorrectly can cause great injury to the dancer.
Vaganova Method Agrippina Vaganova developed
this methos from the Russian technique.
virtuoso: A performer with great ability.
Voléé, de: ["in flight"]. Indicates
that a specific step is to be done with a flying or
waltz: A ballroom dance step in 3/4 time.
warm-up: This is the term used to get the body
ready for class or stage. it's is a
"pre-dance" movement session to avoid
working leg: the leg that is executing the
gievn movement while the weight of the body is on the