BALLET BEAUTIES BY BEA SWEET
Ballet isn’t all pink tutus, a clean face and a bun. Ballet is actually the opposite. It’s sweat, pain, determination and strength, with a few character costumes coinciding alongside the brute force of the Ballerina. And a LOT of makeup.
On a lighter note, ‘tis the season of winter ballets.. From well-known performances such as The Nutcracker or Swan Lake, to lesser-known productions such as “Second Coming” by Ballet Black or “Young Men” by BalletBoyz, London is currently spoilt for choice as to which Christmas-time performance to admire from the comfortable seat of an auditorium.
“The Nutcracker” performed by The English National Ballet at The Coliseum. Over 100 dancers and musicians bring The Nutcracker to life with their exquisite dance, incredible set design all set against Tchaikovsky’s live score. The story is set in a frost-dusted Edwardian London where Clara and her enchanted Nutcracker doll discover a magical world, battling the Mouse King and meeting a handsome stranger until she reaches the glistening Land of Snow where her adventure really begins.
“The Snowman”, a story of a boy and his magical snowman. As a friendship is kindled, the two embark on a starry-sky adventure to the North Pole, where they meet dancing penguins, reindeer, Father Christmas and escape the clutches of Jack Frost;
BalletBoyz (all all-male dance troupe) “Young Men”, An intensely moving portrayal of love, friendship, loss and survival. “Young Men” explores the theme of war and the bonds that develop between the men consumed by it. The production is a hybrid of dance, theatre and screen performance.
Ballet Black, Cassa Pancho’s company of black and Asian classically trained dancers returns with a stunning new programme. Founded in 2001, Ballet Black has achieved great success and garnered numerous awards. Join Ballet Black for their latest ballet, “Second Coming”, a gothic fairytale created by award-winning Choreographer Mark Bruce;
As a personal homage to those dedicating their lives to giving us great Ballet, here are some of my favourite Ballet stars in my favourite roles they’ve performed;
Anna Pavlova was a Russian ballet dancer, born 12th February 1881 and died 23rd January 1931. Her final words were “Get my Swan costume ready”. Pavlova was a Russian Prima Ballerina of the late 19thand early 20th centuries. She was a principal artist of the Imperial Russian Ballet and the Ballet Russes of Sergei Diaghilev. She became the first ballerina to tour ballet around the world with her own company. The Pavlova dessert is believed to have been created in her honour during the 1920’s (with the nationality of its creator debated hotly between New Zealand and Australia for many years), and Pavlova once completed 37 turns while on top of a moving elephant while on a tour in China.
Pavlova once said that the country that would produce the best ballerina in history would be the United States because of all the different cultures that came together there.
WHERE CAN I SEE HER?
My favourite performance and perhaps the one she’s most famous for is The Dying Swan;
During her life she had many pets including a Siamese cat, various dogs, many breeds of birds including swans. A formal studio portrait was made of her with Jack, her favourite swan. With this in mind, I’d recommend Paul & Joe Pink Flamingo Face and Eye Colour Collection. This Spring 2015 collection offers a miniature menagerie of new-season shades for eyes and cheeks, moulded in the shapes of cute animals.
Michaela DePrince is a Sierra Leonean-American ballet dancer but was born as Mabinty Bangura on the 6th January 1995 in Sierra Leone into a Muslim family. DePrince grew up as an orphan in Sierra Leone after her uncle brought her to an orphanage during the civil war.
Her adoptive parents were told that her father was shot by rebels when she was three years old, and that her mother starved to death soon after. She was frequently starved, malnourished, mistreated and called “The Devils Child” due to her vitiligo causing her to have skin depigmentation. She fled to a refugee camp after her orphanage was bombed. In 1999 at four years old she was adopted with her best friend Mia by a Jewish couple from New Jersey and taken to the United States.
In July 2013 DePrince joined the junior company of the Dutch National Ballet, based in Amsterdam and in August 2014 she joined the Dutch National Ballet as an éleve. She is the only dancer of African origin in the Dutch National Ballet.
DePrince has cited Lauren Anderson, the first black American principal ballerina, as her role model.
Michaela performing at the Women in the World Summit –
Behind the scenes of her Teen Vogue shoot –
I’ve studied Michaela’s look and I can see a common theme is a black eyelid and a shiny lip. I think that she’d really love something like this Bobbi Brown High-Shimmer Lip Gloss in shade “Hot”. “Hot” is a high-shine gloss with a special mix of pearls in a shiny base for a super reflective effect in a fuchsia pink shade with pink pearl.
Or if she fancied something minus the shimmer and pink-tint then she could try Bobbi Brown’s Crystal Lip Gloss, a clear high-shine gloss in a squeezable tube.
Sergei Vladimirovich Polunin (20 November 1989) is a Ukrainian ballet dancer who was formerly a principal dancer with the British Royal Ballet. He was the youngest ever dancer to be made a principal with The Royal Ballet at the tender age of 19 and his skill had earned him comparisons with Nureyev and Baryshnikov, and shocked the dance world in January 2012 by unexpectedly quitting.
Sergei Polunin dancing to Hozier’s “Take Me To Church” directed by David LaChapelle:
Read a bit more about him here.
GET SERGEI’S LOOK
I think Sergei would like this product, MAC Paint Stick in “Black Black”. It’s greasy enough to smear anywhere you need it to go and yet durable enough to last a light sweat, and would look pretty cool when it started to run. It’s the kind of product that says bad-boy grunge to me, and therefore the perfect product for the bad boy of ballet.
Ludmilla was a French prima ballerina born into aristocracy. She was also a sculptor, actress, painter, choreographer and author of two novels. Tchérina started dancing at 16 and danced with the Ballet Russe de Monte Carlo. Her Paris debut came with playing the role of Juliet in Romeo and Juliet choreographed by Serge Lifar in 1942, making her the youngest prima ballerina in the history of dance. She often appeared with the Paris Opera, the Bolshoi Ballet and the Kirov Ballet as a guest performer.
Small interview here:
GET LUDMILLA’S LOOK
Ludmilla was stunning, wasn’t she? She was all about the drama and beauty, something I think Ardell Lashes in “113 Black” has in abundance. Stick them down with Duo Glue, a latex-based eyelashglue, and bat those lashes
Moira Shearer (17th January 1926 – 31st January 2006) was an internationally renowned British ballet dancer and actress born in Dunfermline, Scotland. She made her debut in the International Ballet in 1941 and began to dance at Sadler’s Wells in 1942. From 1942 – 1952 she danced all the major classic roles with her first being “Sleeping Beauty” at The Royal Opera House, Covent Garden in 1946.
WHERE CAN I SEE MOIRA?
The Red Shoes
Moira Shearer was rarely seen without her orange-red shade lips in a satin finish. If you prefer a bright red to a deep red, try Armani Beauty Lipstick Rouge Ecstasy in “301” –
or NARS Semi Matte Lipstick in “Heatwave.”
Dame Margot Fonteyn de Arias, DBE (18th May 1919 – 21st February 1991) was an English Ballerina. She is regarded as one of the greatest classical ballet dancers of all time. She spent her entire career as a dancer with The Royal Ballet, eventually being appointed Prima Ballerina Assoluta of the company by Queen Elizabeth II.
Despite a 19-year age gap, differences in background and temperament, her on-stage and off-stage partner Nureyev and Fonteyn became lifelong friends and were famously loyal to each other. Nureyev said of Fonteyn, “At the end of ‘Lac des Cygnes’ when she left the stage in her great white tutu I would have followed her to the end of the world”.
Fonteyn’s partnership with Rudolf Nureyev caught the public’s imagination and after their first performance together in Giselle 1962, they received 23 curtain calls. Fonteyn was however, an international star long before Nureyev, tackling the lead in Swan Lake the year he was born and remains the Royal Ballet’s only Prima Ballerina Assoluta.
You can see her here in her most famous role in Swan Lake, Act 4, Pas de Deux with Rudolph Nureyev –
Illuminage’s Skin Rejuvenating Pillowcase with Copper Oxide is the ultimate overnight solution to help maintain your skin’s youthful appearance and minimise the visible signs of aging including fine lines and lack of smoothness. I just think it’s the perfect pillow for a ballet beauty to lay her head on at night!
For sale here, and can read more about it here.
Madame Upanova is a ballet dancer, and an ostrich in the film from 1940 “Fantasia” where she features in a segment called “Dance of the Hours”. Madame Upanova represents the dawn. She appears in the film waking herself and her ostrich ballet students while the curtains open, pirouetting and shedding lots of feathers.
WHERE CAN I SEE HER?
Dance of the Hours, Fantasia:
GET MADAME UPANOVA’S LOOK
Madame Upanova’s trademark image is her pink hair bow and her huge bright purple batting eyelids. Some of my favourite purple eyeshadows are;
Ben NYE Eyeshadow Refill in shade “Crushed Grape”
MAC Cosmetics Loose Pigment Eyeshadow in shade “Violet”
NARS Matte Eyeshadow in shade “Daphne”
NARS Shimmer Eyeshadow in shade “Strada”
Natalie Portman stars in this psychological thriller set in the world of the New York City Ballet as Nina, a dancer whose starring role as The Swan Queen turns out to be a part for which she becomes scarily perfect.
WHERE CAN I SEE HER?
Black Swan Trailer:
Motif Contact Lenses 658 by Kryolan. These contact lenses are wearable for 12 months, 8.6mm base curve, 14.5mm diameter and are ideal for special occasions or just for the days you want to look like The Swan Queen. Each set contains 2 sterile tinted soft contact lenses (58% Poly Hema, 442% H2O) in buffered saline.