Classical Ballet Terms : An Illustrated Dictionary, Paperback

Classical Ballet Terms : An Illustrated Dictionary Paperback

3.5 out of 5 (1 rating)


Wherever ballet is taught in the world, and in whatever language, it retains one common denominator: the technical terms used are in French.

Yet there are many discrepancies in the perceived meaning, spelling and usage between various countries and teaching methods, and this dictionary aims to prevent confusion by explaining the precise meanings of over 560 of the French technical terms used in classical ballet.

The dictionary is also unique in that it addresses the problems of correct spelling and grammar.

These details may be relatively unimportant to the average dancer, but it is essential that they should be correctly applied when dealing with the printed word.

While most of the entries are concerned with the correct translation and basic explanation of technical terms, there are also extended entries which trace both the historical background and the linguistic origins of particular aspects of ballet terminology.

The dictionary is an essential reference work not only for ballet dancers and teachers, but for all audience members who wish to have a better technical understanding of this most elegant of art forms. The book is illustrated with photographs of Michael Clark, Antonia Franceschi, and Philip Broomhead, taken by Simon Rae-Scott.

Richard Glasstone is a graduate of the Dance Department at Cape Town University, and has worked internationally as a dancer, choreographer, and teacher.

He was Resident Choreographer and Principal Teacher at the Turkish State Ballet from 1965 - 1969, before being invited by Dame Ninette de Valois to join the staff of the Royal Ballet School.

During his 15 years there he held the posts of Senior Teacher for Boys and Director of the Dance Composition Course; he also choreographed numerous ballets for the students, in which many noted dancers of the Royal Ballet Company made their stage debuts.


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 100 pages, black & white illustrations
  • Publisher: Dance Books Ltd
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Ballet
  • ISBN: 9781852730802



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This isn't my favorite ballet dictionary. The terms are pretty clearly written, but the only pictures are in the back. The back has photographs of some of the terms, but I prefer the drawn figures from my other ballet book- I think they are a lot clearer.

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