60 + Best Ballet Quotes: Exclusive Selection

Inspirational ballet quotes will challenge the way you think, and help guide you through any life experience.

Famous Ballet Quotes

The purpose of art is higher than art. What we are really interested in are masterpieces of humanity. – Alonzo King

Learning ballet is wonderful for children even if they never become dancers. It is wonderful because it teaches discipline, grace, and manners. – Anna Paskevska

Technique–bodily control–must be mastered only because the body must not stand in the way of the soul’s expression. The only reason for mastering technique is to make sure the body does not prevent the soul from expressing itself. – La Meri

Ballet is created on beautiful lines and shapes. If what you hear and what you see mesh, there’s a very thrilling experience. – Martin Fridmann

A toe shoe is as eccentric as the ballerina who wears it: their marriage is a commitment. – Toni Bentley

I think most dancers would agree that the art of ballet chooses the dancer, not the other way around. – Kevin Mckenzie

I am always doing things I can’t do, that’s how I get to do them. – Pablo Picasso

You go to the ballet and you see girls dancing on their tiptoes. Why don’t they just get taller girls? – Greg Ray

Dancing is wonderful training for girls. It’s the first way you learn to guess what a man is going to do before he does it. – Christopher Morley

Ballet is not technique but a way of expression that comes more closely to the inner language of man than any other. – George Borodin

Dancers are the athletes of God. – Albert Einstein

Ballet technique is arbitrary and very difficult. It never becomes easy; it becomes possible. – Agnes De Mille

People don’t know that they are being controlled but they are looking where I say to look and they are listening to what I say. And the minute you have a full frontal nudity, they immediately are not looking where you want them to and they are immediately having conversations with each other. They immediately start to talk. They are making all sorts of comparisons if you are a man or a woman, so you have lost concentration. One of the things that started me on this was Robert Helpmann who was the Head of the English Ballet at the time of “Oh! Calcutta!” which was a naked musical, and it was a big thing, you know. They said to Robert Helpmann: “Would you ever do naked ballet?” So he said: “No.” They said: “Why not?” He said: “Because everything does not stop when the music does!” Now I think that is a very good reason because what he is saying is you lose the concentration. Concentration is when the music stops – bang! – you are done. If you are full frontal nude, you are still looking at things still moving. So never do full frontal nudity. – Michael Caine

Ballet is a dance executed by the human soul. – Alexander Pushkin

Yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, but today is a gift. That is why they call it “the present.” – Eleanor Roosevelt

You don’t have to know about ballet to enjoy it, all you have to do is look at it. – Edwin Denby

Even if you weren’t born with a genetically perfect body, you can take something like a hand, where everyone has the same capabilities, and you can make it speak. You can make it speak in many different ways. – Sarah Lamb

Ballet is important and significant – yes. But first of all it is a

pleasure. – George Balanchine

The real beauty in life is that beauty can sometimes occur. – Colum McCann

Ballet is only good when it is great. – Arlene Croce

Ballet class is like Life Lessons 101. You learn some of life’s most important lessons here that you will carry with you forever. – Joanne H. Morscher

To dance is to be out of yourself. Larger, more beautiful, more powerful. This is power, it is glory on earth and it is yours for the taking. – Agnes De Mille

Ballet is the one form of theater where nobody speaks a foolish word all evening, nobody on the stage at least. – Edwin Denby

I get into the studio and I try to make visible what’s in the choreographer’s mind. Sometimes a choreographer wants you to have an idea, and sometimes you are the idea. – Angel Corella

Most people think of ballet as children in little tutus. They don’t know it is sweat, blood and tears as well! – Nan Keating

A child sings before it speaks, dances almost before it walks. Music is in our hearts from the beginning. – Pamela Brown

Ballet is an incredibly difficult, beautiful art form that takes a lot of training, a lot of time, and a lot of hard work. – Sutton Foster

Dance for yourself. If someone understands, good. If not, then no matter. Go right on doing what you love. – Lois Hurst

Ballet is good, because it makes you stand up tall. – Carine Roitfeld

The ballet is a purely female thing. It is a woman, a garden of beautiful flowers, and man is the gardener. – George Balanchine

Ballet is like any other art form in that we all start out knowing nothing about it. – Robert Gottlieb

If ballet was easy, then everyone would be doing it. – unknown

Work like you don’t need the money. Love like you’ve never been hurt. Dance like nobody’s looking. – Unknown

The domain of the ballet dancer is not earth but air. – Lincoln Kirstein

Plie is the first thing you learn and the last thing you master. – Suzanne Farrell

In ballet a complicated story is impossible to tell… we can’t dance synonyms. – George Balanchine

Our pointe shoes are our instruments. If something’s wrong with my feet, all my mind goes there. I usually have six pairs ready. Soft shoes for one act, stiffer shoes for another, stronger shoes for a variation with a lot of turns. – Nina Ananiashvili

Ballet is the fairies’ baseball. – Oscar Levant

A pas de deux is a dialogue of love. How can there be conversation if one partner is dumb? – Rudolf Nureyev

Ballet is purifying, every movement physically honed and essential, with no superfluity or excess. – Jennifer Homans

When I miss class for one day, I know it.n When I miss class for two days, my teacher knows it. When I miss class for three days, the audience knows it. – Rudolf Nureyev

Ballet is a universe of the imagination, a place of magic and enchantment, beauty and romance. Its many worlds vibrate with graceful dancers, glorious music, and sumptuous costumes. –

Trudy Garfunkel

When you dance, your purpose is not to get to a certain place on the floor. It’s to enjoy each step along the way. – Wayne Dyer

The ballet is a purely female thing; it is a woman, a garden of beautiful flowers, and man is the gardener. – George Balanchine

A dancer, more than any other human being, dies two deaths: the first, the physical when the powerfully trained body will no longer respond as you would wish. After all, I choreographed for myself. I never choreographed what I could not do. I changed steps in Medea and other ballets to accommodate the change. But I knew. And it haunted me. I only wanted to dance. – Martha Graham

The ballet embodies the notes of music. And sometimes you almost feel like you can see the notes dance up there on the stage. – Robert Caro

Someone need not be perfect to be a great dancer – feeling a soul is more important than what the body can do. – Marcia Haydée

The ballet needs to tell its own story in such a way it can be received without having to be translated into language. – Twyla Tharp

At the ballet, you really feel like you’re in the presence of something outside the rest of your life. Higher than the rest of your life. – Robert Caro

Learning to walk sets you free. Learning to dance gives you the greatest freedom of all: to express with your whole self the person you are. – Melissa Hayden

Ballet is completely unnatural to the body, just being turned-out… it’s not the way your body is supposed to function, so you actually train your body to be a different structure than you were born with. – Neve Campbell

Poise is the finest point of balance it is possible to attain, both mentally and physically. The various parts of the physique having been adjusted truly to the centre of gravity, poise lifts the whole being to a point so delicate that it almost defies definition… Poise, the great law of equilibrium, is that second in infinity when action ceases and there is rest. – Ruby Ginner

Ballet is such a disciplined craft and it has given me a good grounding. – Jennifer Ellison

… the ultimate aim of all dance must be to move the whole being together in harmony. Therefore, having made the body sensitive, let it be swept by rhythm: the rhythm of music, by moving to a good swinging simple tune; the rhythm of nature, by floating in the sea, and surrendering to the will of the waves; or by lying on the branches of a tree in the wind to feel its effortless swaying. In this way the outer and the inner being will be harmonized… – Ruby Ginner

A fine picture is but the image of nature; a finished ballet is nature herself. – Jean-Georges Noverre

To dance without the help of any other art, to express, not another’s thought or rhythm, but the vision of the artist’s own spirit, that is the highest form of dance. The most exquisite expressions are those when the spirit only makes the song, and the dancer moves in a beauty of silence akin to the silence of the stars. – Ruby Ginner

Ballet will speak for itself. About itself. – George Balanchine

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