Petit Allegro is neglected at most smaller schools in the US. It seems to be tossed aside, or never really done right. Either the tempo is too slow, or they just don’t teach their students the importance of petit allegro. The above picture is why. There are so many “ballet dictionaries” out there that teachers use to reference… and that is what they give. I honestly don’t know how this even got into a book, or how it even looks like a glissade…. but someone published it and put their name to it. *smh*
5 things to help you improve your petit allegro.
1. Close fifth every time. There aren’t very many steps in petit allegro that don’t close 5th, and without closing into a tight clean fifth, you aren’t really doing ballet. #justsayin
2. Stop putting the weight in the back of your foot, in petit allegro you have to be the most forward. By putting your weight forward, that is how you counter balance with your heels… the idea of pressing down and getting the most stretch in your achilles.
3. Carefully plan where you are going to accent in the music. You are able to play with the music a lot in petit allegro if you decide to move faster. Most students don’t realize that petit allegro is fun, flirty, and sassy. It is the one time you can really add some personality without looking over the top dramatic, or jazzarina whack a leg…
4. Your teacher probably doesn’t give good petit allegros, and is hurting you in the long run. Petit allegro makes or break an audition a lot of the times. Everyone focuses on adagio and grand allegro, and pirouettes… Everyone seems to forget, you have to move fast as well… So find a new studio. Okay, or not. But, you might want to ask your teachers why there isn’t an emphasis on it… Challenge how they think, an teach. Most teachers get lazy when it comes to petit allegro. I love petit allegro, so I focus a lot on it.
5. Eat more oatmeal, it makes you smarter so you can think faster… lol. It is what I tell my kids all the time…
5 responses to “Your petit allegro is awful…”
Well said. I suspect people also think petit allegro isn’t as impressive or important (or some such rot) as dashing turns and big, huge leaps — perhaps they don’t realize that ballet is cumulative; that the smaller stuff builds into the bigger stuff. Perhaps they also don’t realize that without petit allegro and connecting steps and so forth, the rest just becomes a string of circus tricks. I love circus tricks, don’t get me wrong — but ballet shouldn’t be about circus tricks.
[…] petit allegro, I find myself thinking about A Ballet Education’s post on the topic, “Your Petit Allegro Is Awful…” and I strive not to be an example of awful petit allegro! Fortunately, the teaching staff at […]
Dear David, I’m reading your posts on allegro one after another because I’m desperate. I have so many problems with allegro and I don’t understand how to improve it. My teacher says it’s because I don’t stick my heels on the floor (I’m trying very hard to do that but they just come off! And I don’t have short achiles). I also noticed that since I’m too scared of allegro, I tend to stop using my arms and upper body and I look like a zoombie trying to put the steps together.
Go slow. Focus on relaxing your foot on the ground then using your whole foot to push off
Thank you. Do you think jumps at the barre could help? At the same time, I’m working on strengthening both my legs and core.