The Off Day Ballet Dictionary

Messy classes are unavoidable, despite our best efforts. So, perhaps we should make lemonade and think of off days as a unique subset of ballet with its own rules and definitions. (Apologies in advance to ballet teachers worldwide.)

Lemonade ballet 3

Created with Wikimedia Commons Public Domain Image 1, Image 2.

Arabesque à la Seconde: The proper name for “a la sebesque”.

Hawaiian Rond de Jombe: Yes, it’s correct technique to include a little hula.

Petrushka Jumps: Pointed feet and stretched knees would just spoil the effect.

Port de Bras de Coppélia: The ability to move like an emotionless, mechanical doll can be invaluable.

“Reverse”: Dance historians now believe this originally meant “take a moment to freestyle”.

Degas Chicken Dance

Created with Wikimedia Commons Public Domain Image.

Runway Updo: A messy bun is fashionable after all.

Spotting: The critical skill of whipping your head around to see just-what-on-earth-is-everyone-else-doing-anyway.

Superman Penchée: Arching your back would ruin the streamlined look. So would lifting your leg above 90 degrees:

superman penchée

“Superman Penchée”. Created with Wikimedia Commons Public Domain Image.

Tombé: The correct way to arrive on the floor…

Variation: As in your own personal variation of whatever the combination was supposed to be…

Vibrato: A sophisticated addition to any balancing exercise.

Zombé: Any step performed with an appropriately dead level of energy.


Created with Wikimedia Commons Public Domain Image.

Adult Ballerina Project Ballerina Writer Program

Up until now, I haven’t really had a formal contributors program, I’ve just had people submit ideas via email when they think of them. We’ve gotten a lot of great pieces this way and I’ve had quite a few regular contributors write for the blog over the past couple of years.

However, I’m looking develop even more of a base of regular writers.

Like all of the other writing for Adult Ballerina Project, I still, unfortunately cannot pay for submissions from contributors (I don’t make any money myself on this project).

How The Program Will Work

About once a month, writers will receive an email from me asking for pitches on future posts for Adult Ballerina Project. As long as the idea fits with the blog and hasn’t been done before, I’ll ask you to write a post about it.

I don’t expect everyone to pitch or write every month, but my hope is that these writers can make a very loose commitment to writing about every three months (I’ll of course, be very happy if you can write more than that!).

However, you won’t get kicked from the writers group if you don’t submit something once every three months.

Who Can Join?

Anyone! Writers who haven’t yet been interviewed for an ABP profile will be asked to do so. You’ll also get a bio and description on the contributors page. Fill out this form to sign-up.

Not interested in the program, but still have an idea you want to write about? Send me an email at

We’ll also potentially have a formal internship in the summer for ten weeks (details still to come). However, if you’re interested in doing an internship in the spring or summer, send me an email at

2015 Reader Survey

Last year around this time I ran my first reader survey. I received a lot of great responses that were really helpful to me in figuring out what type of posts I should be writing. You can check out some of the results here.

This year’s survey has some of the same questions and some new ones as well, so I’d appreciate it if you could take the time to fill it out again.


Quick update about the forums + Twitter Chat

As you may have noticed, the forums are gone. I couldn’t get them to work correctly and they ended up created a lot of spam on ABP. However, we have quite the growing Facebook group going on at the moment. Just request access and then introduce yourself!

Also, I’d love to start hosting Twitter chats again! We held a few about a year and half ago. Let me know if you’re interested in the comments (and please leave your Twitter handle if I don’t already follow you!) I’d also like to get people to co-host and ask questions with me on a regular basis, so let me know if you’re interested in that as well.

Some Updates–website update, the Nutcracker + Pointe!

So I’ve finally gotten around to doing some updates on the blog, mostly because I’ve been sick the past few days and haven’t made it to a ballet class or been able to go running. So I’ve done some messing around with a redesign to make stuff more readable and easier to find. Getting the studio stuff all in a line again is going to take a little bit longer…but we’re working on it.

On to ballet updates:

Although I’m feeling like crap for not having made it to a class since before Thanksgiving, things are going well. I’m so happy I get to learn choreography to Nutcracker music since I missed all of that last year thanks to my injury. Recently, I’ve also started doing some pre-pointe work again. I wish I had an awesome picture to share here, but I don’t. I’ll have to take one before the holidays start-up again.

HQ and I have also recently joined a gym, so hopefully I’ll get to improve my cardio more (since it really sucks right now).

Share your lovely ballet updates with me!

(PS sending out a round of emails this morning to those who submitted to be featured on the site!)

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