Ballet is a kind of performing arts, a performance with a definite story, topic, libretto, and a dramatic personification of the main characters on the basis of musical-choreographic images. The XX century gave start to the ballet without topic, based mainly on the perfectly performed pantomime which renders all the dancers’ emotions, their dialogue.
The history of ballet begins with the Renaissance period in the territory of the present-day Italy. This kind of art received a wider and wider usage as entertainment in court palaces for aristocracy and numerous grand people. An important figure in the history of ballet was Catherine de Medici who brought this art from Italy to France, and began arranging small performances for her guests.
October 15, 1581 can be considered the true birthday of ballet; it was then that the Italian choreographer Baltazarini presented his beautiful ballet ‘Circe’ or ‘Queen’s Comedy Ballet’ to the public, and the show lasted about 5 hours. The great supporter and admirer of ballet was King Louis XIV, nicknamed ‘the Sun King’ because of his participation in a dancing show Le Ballet de la Nuit of 1653, created by the court choreographer Jean-Baptiste Lully. In 1661 Louis XIV founded the Royal Academy of Dance, which was the first ballet school in the world. The major role in the development of the French ballet art can be referred to Lully, who did everything possible to daintily ballet and attach true beauty, perfection and precision to it. In1672 a dancing academy was founded with J.-B. Lully’s assistance, which is now world famous, it is the Paris Opera Ballet.
In the XVIII century, due to scenic innovations of the French choreographer Jean-Georges Noverre, the music, as the basis of the whole ballet show, received a more meaningful role in the performance. At that time the whole Europe was enchanted by ballet, because it was something new and different, something light and absolutely ethereal; in early XIX century all the effort was spared to study the theory of ballet staging: the Italian theorist of dance Carlo Blasis wrote “Elementary Tractate on Theory and Practice of Dancing Art”. But the greatest novelty was dancing on a tiptoe, invented by a famous Italian ballet- dancer of the Romanticism period Marie Taglioni, which exploded the minds of choreographers.
After such a raving success, the ballet in France began to decline, but after its active development in Russia and America everybody started discussing this wonderful ‘dance of feelings’ again. A new kind of dance - plastic modern - is born, which departed from classical choreography.
Nowadays, ballet is not merely a well-staged dance, but a magic breath-taking show, relating about a secret story and feelings between the dancers.