Quick question: has everyone else noticed the sudden uptick of ballet in ads and pop culture as of late? I sure have.
There’s the phenomenal Misty Copeland UnderAmour TV spot:
…the viral Taylor Swift music video:
…the many deoderant ads:
It seems that the idea that dancing is hard and/or sweat-inducing makes for great antiperspirant commercials. And, we can’t forget the infamous Free People spots gone horribly, horribly wrong.
So, what happened? It seems that every few years or so, ballet is thrust into the spotlight. Back in the day, it was Center Stage and more recently Black Swan, with all its dance double controversy. Dance has always been a big part of pop culture, but ballet, which has such a small niche, tends to come and go. It’s often labeled with the stigma of elitist, out-dated, and boring. Now, I’ll be the first one to tell you that I’m not the biggest fan of sitting through a three hour production of Swan Lake. Here’s a hint: uber-classical ballet is really fun…when you or your friends are the ones doing it. Recently, ballet as an art form has given way to so many visually diverse, modern, and mind-blowing new works. It’s changed so much over the last few decades, even.
It’s always nice to see something you’re passionate about in the limelight. In a world that’s always moving on to the next “big thing,” it’s conversely frustrating to see people absorb the thing that you’ve dedicated your life to, without context, and move on. Misty Copeland, as beautiful as she is, is a very much (and self-proclaimed, I might add) the unlikely ballerina. Ballet, like any athletic endeavor, has its politics- its traditions and its trends. That being said, it’s wonderful to witness ballet’s evolution, and its occasional emergence in pop culture. All I ask is that, after you get tired of watching Taylor Swift play ballerina and when Misty’s chiseled physique ceases to amaze you, you don’t forget about the ballet. Maybe go, have a glass of wine, and see one for yourself.