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 Post subject: Re: Keefer Case and Body Image - BIG Forum
PostPosted: Fri Jul 06, 2001 10:47 am 
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I think we're talking about different things here. Some of us are talking about what is reasonably acceptable in a dancer in terms of fat. Some are talking about what's too thin. Auntie I believe is referring to the child referred to in the title of this thread.<P>Some children will just never have the look even going by the standards of yesteryear.


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 Post subject: Re: Keefer Case and Body Image - BIG Forum
PostPosted: Fri Jul 06, 2001 12:03 pm 
I think it all ties into the same thing Azlan; if they can be hard on a healthy 8 year old-not knowing how shes going to look like when shes an adolescent-they are certainly going to be hard on an adult-and they are in the dance world.


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 Post subject: Re: Keefer Case and Body Image - BIG Forum
PostPosted: Fri Jul 06, 2001 5:00 pm 
Wrong, Azlan - you don't EVER wanna second-guess the darlin' Auntie. As for the previously mentioned ballerinas, uh, where are they now?? Did you happen to see Cynthia in the waning days of her career (you don't wanna know...). Anyway, I - for instance - am not applying for employment on the police force, the fire brigade, the International Brotherhood of Iron Workers or that World Wrestling outfit - why? Because I DO NOT FIT THE PHYSICAL REQUIREMENTS. It's a fact of life. I am in the dance biz but on the production end. I am small boned and weigh 110 lbs. I stay in the game by competitive weight training...


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 Post subject: Re: Keefer Case and Body Image - BIG Forum
PostPosted: Fri Jul 06, 2001 6:16 pm 
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I think the point is that this child does not have the other attributes that are required to be a professional dancer even if she had a different body. Plain and simple. Once again I have seen her performance.


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 Post subject: Re: Keefer Case and Body Image - BIG Forum
PostPosted: Fri Jul 06, 2001 6:28 pm 
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Auntie, I think you misunderstood me. I believe I said the same thing you did, that is while others are discussing what's too fat or too thin, we're talking about the actual physique. I said above that, "Some children will just never have the look even going by the standards of yesteryear," meaning that no matter how much fat you lose or gain, you may never be suitable for a specialist career that has specific body demands.<P>Auntie, correct me if I am wrong but did your anxiety in regards to this issue cause you to misread my comments?<p>[This message has been edited by Azlan (edited July 06, 2001).]


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 Post subject: Re: Keefer Case and Body Image - BIG Forum
PostPosted: Fri Jul 06, 2001 6:36 pm 
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Location: SF Bay Area
BTW, this is what I said in another thread:
Quote:
It is a responsibility to me and to the Taxpayers of San Francisco that the San Francisco Ballet School produces the best it can. I would not want it to waste my money on a student who in its judgement will displace another who is better qualified.
For more, check out these previous, heated debates:

The Keefer Case

The Keefer case's aftermath

And these are two discussions on criticaldance.com that predated the Keefer case and that inspired a couple of newspaper articles (I know so because the correspondents told me themselves):

Does Body Type Matter?

Weight and the Aesthetics of the Ballet - Lewis Segal of the Los Angeles Times

[This message has been edited by Azlan (edited July 06, 2001).]

<font size = -2><center>(Edited by salzberg to fix link)</center></font>

<small>[ 08-11-2002, 06:07: Message edited by: salzberg ]</small>


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 Post subject: Re: Keefer Case and Body Image - BIG Forum
PostPosted: Fri Jul 06, 2001 7:40 pm 
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Location: Seattle, WA USA
I dont' want to be a party-pooper here..but this discussion seems to be going in circles. And no one's minds are being changed, enlightened or educated. I dont' have any solution, by the way...merely an observation. Everyone seems to be projecting their own anger, fear and loathing ("Fear and Loathing in Ballet Land"?) about body issues into the discussion (now lawsuit, yikes!), all revolving around AN EIGHT YEAR OLD CHILD!!!!!!!!!. What an experience for a little kid...wow!<BR>And, dare I say? Ballet is not the only arena in which body issues are played out, and indeed not the central, mainstream one. The image makers in the worlds of fashion and advertising are certainly more omni-present to the average American than ballet bun-heads. Hmmm...maybe that's the purpose of the lawsuit, to MAKE it more "mainstream" of an issue?<BR>...I see pros and cons on both sides of this issue. Just trying to keep it all in perspective.<p>[This message has been edited by trina (edited July 06, 2001).]


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 Post subject: Re: Keefer Case and Body Image - BIG Forum
PostPosted: Fri Jul 06, 2001 7:54 pm 
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Location: SF Bay Area
Aw, shucks, Trina. Just when we were about to have some fun! Image


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 Post subject: Re: Keefer Case and Body Image - BIG Forum
PostPosted: Sat Jul 07, 2001 5:41 am 
Wrong again, Azlan, I have absolutely no anxiety about anything (gee, I see a whole new career path opening up for me here as a site administrator...). Anyway, I know/knew both the Keefer and Guenther girls (heck, I remember when the Keefer girl was born...). If I have any misgivings about anything, it’s about the wrong-headedness and fuzzy thinking that seems to obtain with respect to the ballet business (and there is, indeed, a very serious business aspect to it), here and everywhere else. I hate to see any arts organization (whether it’s SFB or BB) take hits because of ignorance, misunderstanding, supposed elitism, etc. - you name it. Square Two: does anybody out there personally know either of these two girls? (Where’s Lucy...?) Had the Guenther case gone forward, there probably would have been some very damaging revelations about the mental aspect of the deceased. It is most merciful that it played out the way it did. Possibly worth noting that the parallel universes of music and art had the same foofaraw: the impressionists vs. the<BR>fauvists vs. the cubists vs. serialists vs. the pointillists vs. the dadaists, ad infinitum...more later...byeeeee


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 Post subject: Re: Keefer Case and Body Image - BIG Forum
PostPosted: Sat Jul 07, 2001 7:04 am 
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Lucy is busy preparing for a party. Image But I will send her a message to check this thread.<P>So, Auntie, if I am wrong <I>again</I>, are you still saying I was wrong the first time when I said<P> <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>"Some children will just never have the look even going by the standards of yesteryear," meaning that no matter how much fat you lose or gain, you may never be suitable for a specialist career that has specific body demands.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE><P>which was in support of your comments:<P> <BLOCKQUOTE><font size="1" face="Verdana, Arial">quote:</font><HR>for instance - am not applying for employment on the police force, the fire brigade, the International Brotherhood of Iron Workers or that World Wrestling outfit - why? Because I DO NOT FIT THE PHYSICAL REQUIREMENTS.<HR></BLOCKQUOTE><P>The reason I am asking is I've gotten messages from readers worldwide, including possibly a mutual friend and people intimate with both cases, who are confused about what you are saying given that you refuted statements by others that are in support of your own.


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 Post subject: Re: Keefer Case and Body Image - BIG Forum
PostPosted: Sat Jul 07, 2001 7:25 am 
As for WHERE THEY ARE NOW( the ballerinas mentioned above),since their suceesful careers existed in the 1930s,40s,50s,60s,70s they have either retired or passed on......and since they are STILL remembered and revered in the dance world,it just proves that they were not"fat",flash-in-the-pans.


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 Post subject: Re: Keefer Case and Body Image - BIG Forum
PostPosted: Sat Jul 07, 2001 8:33 am 
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Location: El Granada, CA, USA
The technique was much different then. MUCH different.


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 Post subject: Re: Keefer Case and Body Image - BIG Forum
PostPosted: Sat Jul 07, 2001 8:37 am 
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You know, when you go back and look at the old tapes of the Olympics at the same times (30s, 40s, 50s...)all those athletes look fat by today's Olympic standards. We are constantly pushing the boundary. Our bodies are going to reflect that.<P>Would we be having this discussion in Russia or China? Ballet is a priviledge there, not a right like so many people believe it is here.


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 Post subject: Re: Keefer Case and Body Image - BIG Forum
PostPosted: Sat Jul 07, 2001 9:01 am 
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Location: SF Bay Area
Agreed, LMCtech. Your articulation focuses us back to the point (if I didn't know better, I'd think you were a critic in a previous life). There was a special on Nightline a couple years ago that examined how the human body has evolved to become stonger, faster, more alert and generally much more powerful. I believe Trisha Brown was interviewed on it.<P>Even while SFB and other like companies prove there is room for variations in body types, each of these bodies are still toned and primed for their art -- a retired dancer, who was in her prime twenty years or so ago, confessed to me she would not fit in a ballet company today and that technical ballet feats thirty years ago are commonplace today.<P>We are constantly pushing the limits of the art technically and thereby also the human body. Otherwise, I believe we stagnate.<P>Then there are others who just simply do not have the right tools to begin with. Yes, even for a child of eight, my expert friends tell me they can make good statistical predictions of what they are likely to get. It is a matter of maximizing effort. A well-known teacher told me that if she was going to spend a big chunk of her lifetime training a dancer, she would want to make sure she's getting a good raw product to begin with.<p>[This message has been edited by Azlan (edited July 07, 2001).]


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 Post subject: Re: Keefer Case and Body Image - BIG Forum
PostPosted: Sat Jul 07, 2001 9:36 am 
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Hmmmm...hate to over old territory, Azlan. But I dont' sincerely believe that one can "predict" how a child's body will develop post-puberty, judging from when they're 8 yrs. old. For example, I grew 3 inches when I was 18 yrs. old--I was a late bloomer, so to speak! Bodies change too much during puberty. Talent wise, flexibility wise, musicality wise...yes, maybe you can predit. Those things wont' change significantly, in my opinion. There has been some contention on this thread if what this controversy is about is: "body type" or "facilty" (meaning technical capability or potential, here we're talking about WITHIN the ballet tradition, whatever we deem that to be), OR innate dance abilty (the inborn gift of movment). I'm still unclear which of these three things this controversy is about?<BR>As far as your friend who was a teacher and wants to have ideal body types to work with (you mentioned this Azlan at the end of your last post), I couldn't disagree more. We NEVER know who of our student will develop and go to become professional. To try to predict that, you will set yourself up for some serious disappointments. The JOB of a teacher is to give selflessly to all who wander your way. Of course, this can be a challenge. But since none of us have a crystal ball, we can't know which one of our students has the drive, luck, talent and guts to "make it". It's just too fickle of a "biz'. Sorry, that's just been my experience.<p>[This message has been edited by trina (edited July 07, 2001).]


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