As much as we may enjoy Swan Lake or The Nutcracker, for many of us ballet is a foreign language. It communicates through movement, not words, and its history lies almost entirely abroad--in Russia, Italy, and France. In Celestial Bodies, dance critic Laura Jacobs makes the foreign familiar, providing a lively, poetic, and uniquely accessible introduction to the world of classical dance. Combining history, interviews with dancers, technical definitions, descriptions of performances, and personal stories, Jacobs offers an intimate and passionate guide to watching ballet and understanding the central elements of choreography.
Beautifully written and elegantly illustrated with original drawings, Celestial Bodies is essential reading for all lovers of this magnificent art form.
Laura Jacobs is a contributing editor at Vanity Fair and the dance critic for the New Criterion, where she has been since 1994. Dubbed "our best dance critic" by the editor of Ballet Review, Jacobs has also written about dance for the Atlantic, Chicago Reader, and London Review of Books. She lives in New York City.
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A distinguished dance critic offers an enchanting introduction to the art of ballet