Must-Know Ballet Trivia

Fri Nov 25 10:46:27 CST 2022

01 When did ballet originate?

The earliest dance notation originated in Italy in the middle of the 15th century. The wealthy families in various Italian states sponsored dance masters to create court dances and entertainment performances for them. For example, Domenico de Piacenza wrote dances for the Este family in Ferrara around 1460, and these manuscripts are seen as the origin of ballet.

02 Which was the first ballet?

The Three Sirens of The Queen's Comedy Ballet

The sea monsters in Greek mythology are uniformly dressed, with their legs hidden behind the water scenery, and they lure the sailors to the road of destruction with sweet songs, warning the courtiers not to deviate from the road of loyalty to the king.

Thanks to its structured choreography and textual narrative, La Comédie Ballet Reina is often referred to as the first true ballet. First performed in 1582 to celebrate the wedding of Marguerite de Vaudemonte to Duke Jesse, the play follows Odysseus' escape from the Greek world of Circe Mythology, containing allegorical figures familiar to many courtiers of the time. Following the French Civil War, the creators hoped to convey the authority of the monarch to those in the palace through this grand and magnificent performance.

03When was the first dance organization established?

In 1661, Louis XIV opened the first dance institution in the Western world, the Royal Academy of Dance, to establish the rules of the dance kingdom and standardize the current court dance and character dance. Louis XIV entrusted this task to thirteen ballet masters .

The college has also set up an examination for dance teachers, and issues certificates to those who pass the examination to obtain teaching qualifications.

04 Which is the oldest ballet company in the world?

Paris Opera Ballet. This ballet company was founded in 1669 during the reign of Louis XIV.

In The Ballet Class (1875), French Impressionist artist Edgar Degas depicts Jules Perrault instructing dancers in a class. This imaginary scene, featuring twenty-four female dancers, was set in the rehearsal rooms of the old Paris Opera House.

The Paris Opera Ballet has shown its pioneering role from the very beginning. It was the first company to use professional ballerinas, before female roles were played by young men. Nearly a century later, the director Jean-Georges Noverre (1727-1810) had the bold idea to replace the clumsy skirt dress and discard the mask to make the dance look more natural. Other courts across Europe followed the example of the Paris Opera Ballet, hiring French-trained dancers and choreographers to create their own ballet companies, despite frequent stymie from conservative rulers.