Behind the Scenes with Ella Turner and Kimberly Payne

Ballet lessons expose students to de rigueur of classical studies. Kimberly and Ella are working to keep online lessons fun; but will refuse to sacrifice the opportunity for students to face challenges to change their body into instruments of joy. Similarly, the polarizing approach of chiropractor and medical doctor, of Eastern and Western medical practices; ballet must balance healthy kinesthetic practice and the artistry of changing the body. Our partnership is an invitation for students to grasp a vision of using their body for communicating to the the hearts and minds of an audience. As we continue to focus on joy, storytelling, and sharing happiness with the world, our Ballet lessons will hold students accountable for becoming fortified, hard-working athletes.

George Balanchine is quoted in the Times (1981) ”It is not a style, even. I was brought up in St. Petersburg, by wonderful teachers, with elegant dancers. We learned how to behave and dress. We had the best choreographers and teachers.” He reflects on continuity, and the long lineage of his classical inheritance. ”I brought the right thing here. It is not a style, just the right, best thing to do. The rest is not right, to me. Dancers have to be strong-willed,” continues Mr. Balanchine, who once compared the balletmaster and his company to a lion-tamer and lions. “They must put all their mind and body into it. You can’t be half and half. I always say: Only this. Nothing else, or you will not become a very interesting dancer. I don’t do anything else. I go home. I eat. I teach. I have for 50 years. I didn’t want to be anything else.”

A version of this article appears in print on Feb. 8, 1981, Section 2, Page 1 of the National edition with the headline: THE CREATION OF A BALANCHINE BALLERINA.
Check out Ella’s YouTube Channel


Payne and Turner know that classical studies will always fuel an all-consuming intensity that must be carefully stewarded. “Some students will take to it quickly and become addicted, while others will be exasperated or repelled. Faculty will need to keep the lessons balanced and joyous; but cannot sacrifice the opportunity for students to face the straightforward, simple technique principles offered in our lessons”, explained Payne. Subscriptions for WEEKLY TEACHER PREP videos will be available beginning on September. Let’s applaud these performers as the work to help all students grasp the vision of using their body, and their team/troupe/ensemble/company, as an instrument that will reach beyond the stage and touch the soul of the audience. We must all remain devoted to joy and the hard work will make strong and capable dancers.

Nothing fancy here – two joyous dancers working on making more joyous dancers.

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