Join the Conversation

Join the Conversation

Sign up today to hear about books and authors from an independent bookstore near you.

The Ballet Companion

The Ballet Companion Cover

The Ballet Companion

A Dancer's Guide to the Technique, Traditions, and Joys of Ballet

By Eliza Gaynor Minden

Fireside Books, Hardcover, 9780743264075, 331pp.

Publication Date: October 11, 2005

A New Classic for Today's Dancer
The Ballet Companion is a fresh, comprehensive, and thoroughly up-to-date reference book for the dancer. With 150 stunning photographs of ballet stars Maria Riccetto and Benjamin Millepied demonstrating perfect execution of positions and steps, this elegant volume brims with everything today's dance student needs, including:
  • Practical advice for getting started, such as selecting a school, making the most of class, and studio etiquette
  • Explanations of ballet fundamentals and major training systems
  • An illustrated guide through ballet class -- warm-up, barre, and center floor
  • Guidelines for safe, healthy dancing through a sensible diet, injury prevention, and cross-training with yoga and Pilates
  • Descriptions of must-see ballets and glossaries of dance, music, and theater terms

Along the way you'll find technique secrets from stars of American Ballet Theatre, lavishly illustrated sidebars on ballet history, and tips on everything from styling a ballet bun to stage makeup to performing the perfect pirouette.
Whether a budding ballerina, serious student, or adult returning to ballet, dancers will find a lively mix of ballet's time-honored traditions and essential new information.

Praise For The Ballet Companion

"The Ballet Companion is exactly that, a companion for dancers wishing to expand their knowledge of the art form and its ever-changing yet lasting community."

-- Lourdes Lopez, former principal dancer, New York City Ballet

"Everyone interested in ballet should read this book. It is a treasure trove for ballet enthusiasts."

-- Kirk Peterson, ballet master/choreographer, American Ballet Theatre

"Unique and comprehensive, this is a wonderful companion and guide for anybody who loves dance."

-- Edward Villella, Former Principal Dancer, New York City Ballet and Founding Artistic Director, Miami City Ballet

"The Ballet Companion is exactly that, a companion for dancers wishing to expand their knowledge of the art form and its ever changing yet lasting community. Finally, a book that reveals its rich history and strong tradition and how incredibly fortunate we are to belong to it."

-- Lourdes Lopez, former Principal Dancer New York City Ballet

"A superb reference book-all the information today's students need but can't get just by taking class-every dancer's library should have it."

-- Angel Corella, Principal Dancer, American Ballet Theatre

"Eliza Gaynor Minden captures our imagination, taking us into the magical world of ballet."

-- David Howard, internationally acclaimed aster teacher and coach

"This book is a broad canvas of the history, elements, and components of dance. It is must reading for those who love dance and wish to explore its functions and derivation."

-- Melissa Hayden, former principal dancer New York City Ballet, faculty, North Carolina School of the Arts

"This comprehensive guide to the world of ballet is a must-have for all dance enthusiasts."

-- Gillian Murphy, Principal Dancer, American Ballet Theatre

"A smorgasboerd of information about the world of ballet!"

-- Alexandra Ansanellli, Principal Dancer, New York City Ballet

"This offers a wealth of information as well as being extremely interesting."

-- Mignon Furman, director, American Academy of Ballet