|Irina's oil paintings: Mikhail Baryshnikov (Photo credit: Wikipedia)|
Enchanting and graceful with unbelievable steps, ballet is an extremely difficult dance to be learned perfectly. Great determination, undying spirit, hard work, unbounded practice, and pain are required to master the steps and make a graceful and superb dancer.
To enable dancers to perform perfectly, there are special shoes available - simply called ballet shoes or ballet slippers - made out of leather, satin, or canvas which makes ballet steps and movements possible without causing any injuries to the dancer.
Research shows that some brands are particularly known for making good ballet shoes of different types, materials, and designs. Angelo Luzio, Freed, Gamba, Grishko, Leo, Patterson, Sansha, Art Stone, Bloch, Capezio, and Danshuz are some brands among others which specialize in ballet shoes or slippers.
Ballet slippers are always preferred to be snug but not tight, and to have enough room for the toes to spread out comfortably. Good ballet shoes also have ribbons and elastics to allow for flexibility and feet comfort. Options exist as to the type of sole pattern desired - split or full sole.
Multitudes of ballet schools exist which have brilliant teachers imparting ballet lessons to people of all ages. Apart from the normal ballet lessons, there are even summer intensive courses and some special courses to children aged 3 or 4 years. Such courses help to tune in their movements to music. However, most professional courses begin at the age of 9 years.
American Repertory Ballet's Princeton Ballet School, School of American Ballet, the San Francisco Ballet School, and Canada's Royal Winnipeg Ballet are some schools which impart professional ballet dancing lessons.
Some talented and famous dancers include Anna Pavlova, Vaslav Nijinsky, Alicia Alonso, Briely Movric, Paloma Herrera, and Mikhail Baryshnikov, besides many, many others.
An expressive dance form, ballet continues today in its ever-growing popularity, stealing hearts of millions of people all over the world.