BHF: Ouch! Toe Shoes Hurt!

Ballet Hommes Fatals

Ballet with a wink: the men of Ballet Hommes Fatals find out — the hard way — The Truth about toe shoes and tutu’s.

>This is the beginning of the full article, including video excerpts, that you can read in our Magazine section.

That’s what the all-male dance troupe Ballet Hommes Fatals is finding out as they prepare for their Feb 28 premiere. (And yes, they are rehearsing the ‘dying swan.’)

It says something about a dancer’s versatility: One minute you can see him in the studio confidently, gracefully lifting a ballerina. That’s under the watchful eye of British guest choreographer Michael Corder (rehearsing the Czech National Ballet’s upcoming The Snow Queen).

And the next minute, that same male dancer can fold his long legs under him on a couch and chat – and laugh – about the pain of dancing in man-sized toe shoes (for his upcoming roles as a ballerina, in the new all-male Ballet Hommes Fatals (BHF).

But that’s what principal dancer Michal Štípa does – elegantly, with warmth and enthusiasm. He settles into the plush couch next to BHF co-founder Jana Malisová, and together they cheerily complete each other’s answers to Opus Osm’s questions, in a mixture of Czech and English.

Michal Štípa

Michal Štípa

“I’m very excited that this [travesti troupe] is actually going to happen,” he enthuses. Ballet Hommes Fatals was cast by dancers who are all colleagues at the Czech National Ballet, rather than by open audition, so, “I’m glad we’re together. It’s good to be with friends, it’s a very good atmosphere,” he says. It can be assumed that they also all share the same sense of humor – and adventure. …

Click here to go to “Magazine” and continue reading; and to watch three interview video excerpts.

Photo Credits: Ballet Hommes Fatals

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