23 Apr Try the Ballet
I’m not fancy. I like regular mustard better than Grey Poupon. I do drink good gin – but out of crystal goblets I bought not at Birks, but from the local Kelowna Women’s Shelter thrift shop. Plus, I’ve never even been to Paris! So when I was invited to a Ballet Kelowna sneak peek event, my eyebrows shot upwards and my brow crinkled. (A crinkled brow! I’m not even high-society enough for Botox!) Ballet is far too froufrou for me, I thought. Indeed, trop de fantaisie! Oui, oui!
But for a few reasons, in spite of my lack of fancy-pants-ness and complete ignorance of the dance world, I accepted the invitation to the rehearsal of “Renaissance”—the upcoming collaboration of Ballet Kelowna with Toronto’s Continuum Contemporary Music. It took me one glass of Quail’s Gate wine and five minutes to realize I was wrong to be intimidated. Because as soon as I started watching the extraordinary troupe, their talented Artistic Director Simone Orlando, and the crazy cool musicians in rehearsal, I was captivated. I’d never seen professional dancers in action, and I was blown away by their teamwork, athleticism, grace, artistic vision, and the dynamic live music.
So why have I always felt intimidated by ballet? Partially, perhaps, because of the ostentatious verbiage attached to it. But today while I was looking up some of ballet’s language (fraught with accents), I had an epiphany. With the adjustments of just a few letters, ballet words are really very everyday and quite ordinary. For example, ADIAGO is almost Asiago and BRISE so much like Brie. Cheese isn’t too fancy for me! With the strikethrough of a couple of letters,
ALLEG RO transforms to Lego. I like Lego, too! And the addition of a few letters can quickly transform the ornate into the simple. Add an “I” to DEVANT and you’ve got deviant, add an “o” to BALLON and you’ve got a regular old party prop! Also, the word BALLET itself is just one letter away from the familiar—replacing the final “t’ with an “r”, gives you baller. And that’s simply the most unpretentious word in the English language on Urban Dictionary!
Honestly, no matter your level of chic, you’re seriously fancy enough for ballet. And after witnessing Ballet Kelowna‘s beautiful rehearsal, if you appreciate the dedication of professional athletes, live music, and inspiring art, teamwork, and grace, I’d really recommend checking out their Renaissance show April 29 and 30 at the Kelowna Community Theatre.
Photo: Hannah Fischer. Photo by Aleksandar Antonijevic