Monday, 2 April 2012

The only thing that makes me sit still.

I have issues with sitting still and not doing anything.

Don't get me wrong. I can sit and watch TV for 5 hours straight like the best of them, but that won't be the only thing I'm doing. I'll be tidying up or doing cross-stitch or writing an e-mail or doing all kinds of jiggery pokery. I won't just be sitting there.

I can be a bit of nightmare in cinemas because I can't just sit and watch the damn film. I know it's a good film if I've managed to sit still for about an hour. But I'll be shifting in my seat and fighting the urge to go and do something else with my time.

But there is one thing that has the ability to make me stop. Completely. And allow myself to be lost in a moment. No wriggling about, no wanting to check what time it is, no desiring the need to find some cross stitch or crochet to keep me from getting bored.
The ballet.
Yes I know. Hello my name is middle class.
I don't know what it is about it. Sometimes I haven't got a clue what the hell is going on but somehow it still makes sense. And even if it doesn't make sense, for some reason it doesn't seem to matter. I am transfixed and taken away from myself and my neverending brain, demanding that I always be "doing".
I've seen some of the big traditional ballets and when I saw that the Northen Ballet was doing a production of Beauty and the Beast I was really intrigued. With Mother's Day coming up I decided that rather than buy Mum a bunch of flowers (to join the 2 other bunches of flowers that my unimaginative siblings send) I would spend the money and get her a ticket to go to the ballet later in the month.
I wasn't sure what to expect from this production. Not least because I have a major confession to make....I don't really know the story of Beauty and the Beast. I know, I hang my head in shame. I'm pretty rubbish when it comes to fairy stories and when you couple that with my general dislike of Disney films you'll find a paucity of information about swashbuckling princes and dynamic leading ladies.
However, this ballet might be by far and away the best ballet I've ever seen. It wasn't traditional at all, and I do wonder if that might have ruffled some feathers, there were certainly some grumblings from the old couple sat behind us. It was definitely more modern, it wasn't just ballerinas up on pointe all the time, there was much more modern dancing going on. I am not in the know of what you call all the different dance genres and I'm desperately trying to conjure up some of the names of the dances that I've seen on the few episodes of So You Think You Can Dance that I've seen. I'm going to go with Contemporary I think. More of that than just straight up ballet.
And the costumes. Oh the costumes! Absolutely one hundred per cent the best costumes I've ever seen. And the same goes for the set design. Some might think those things are the unneccesary extras but believe me they made the show.
I sat there and although I did look up the story on Wikipedia at the end of the night (I'm way too cheap to buy the programme I'm afraid) it was mostly to confirm what I thought was  going on, rather than figure out what the hell everyone was on about.
The production is still touring and I urge you to go and see it if it's near you. Especially if you haven't really done the ballet before, this would be a great choice.

For more info go here.


  1. Can completely identify with this - both with the needing to be on the go and with the magic of the ballet. Not sure why its so spellbinding - think it might be something to do with the sheer physicality of it with that appearance of it all being easy and graceful. I can still remember seeing ballet live for the first time years ago - Ballet Rambert - and being completely transfixed. Have never seen the Northern ballet - one to watch out for, clearly!

  2. Sounds really interesting. My other half isn't a fan of the ballet but when I went as a child I loved it. I might need to explore it again at some stage. Michelle

  3. I always prefer personal recommendations, and this one right here is pretty darn good! I haven't ever seen ballet and I think it's high time that I did. Glad you enjoyed it so much.

  4. Everything that the Northern Ballet does is fab - costumes everything. I bought my sons girlfriend tickets for this in Sheffield last week and she totally loved it. xxx

  5. Sounds excellent. I really like ballet but the boyfriend is not a fan and neither are my parents or most of my friends. So I have been a total three times in my life. First world problem, that.

  6. Hello there! Thought I might have missed a lot but you haven't been posting much either! Love ballet, although haven't been in years. Must try to go soon.
    Don't think one of my comments a while back ever got posted. I tried a couple of times and after blogger deleted everything each time, i lost the urge to try again. Wanted to say i was really sorry to hear about your job stuff, but i guess it was nice that you were able to move in with the person? Don't know where you're at with all that but hope all is going well.

  7. In all honesty, I only bought tickets because I read this blog. It was worth it, so thank you.


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