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A Beautiful Tragedy: Ballet Documentary Part I

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Published on Aug 9, 2011

A Documentary by David Kinsella. "Soon" from GGMB has seen the documentary with subtitles, and kindly translated for us. Feel free to add more to it. Thanks very much, Soon!

"Once there was a woman who wanted very much to be a ballerina, but it her dreams didn't come true. Then she had a little girl, she decided that the baby would be a dancer.
OS: The train, again going from Kharkov to Perm. There is is! The holidays flew by in a flash. I've got a lot to write in my diary. I have to find the time. I hope that I won't miss home and mama so much this year.
Mother: I decided immediately she would dance ballet, so when she was a month old she was already doing splits. Upper turnout, lower turnout: she always had good feet. I checked them when she was born. At four I planned to give her to ballet, but they didn't take children so young then. It is only now that they do. Not then, only five year old children. They told to come back in a year, and I came back in exactly a year. April 20 she was five, and April 21 we went to the ballet school.
OS: A new page in my diary. The new school year. Where do I start? Maybe with the fact that the most hated day is approaching. I hate September 1! Because only now it's realized that vacation is over, and how long and hard the year ahead is. Now we're real students and have to study twice as hard. New subjects, and rest time only in the winter. And as always, mama has advised me to let out my negative emotions in my diary and not hold them in. I'll do it. (Classroom footage - if there were subtitles I don't remember them, and I don't understand the hobbit voice talking to Nadia.)
The profession of a ballet artist is extremely difficult. It requires strength, not just physical but emotional strength and nerves. Children at the school lead kind of limited lives for that reason. Also dictated by the big class schedule. They start at 9am and end at 9pm. It's a shame that starting choreography at age 10, they may be giving up childhood, but such a beautiful profession is worth it. It demands sacrifices.
Sakharova: "Hold your hands little girl, and look at us!"
OS: I thought, what if Sakharova begins shouting and hhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh it was so scary. But it was okay, she just sat there normally. She was in an okay mood (?).
Whispers: she's small... spine? Spine...
OS: Ballet's (wonderful) to me. Even when you think "no use" you come into the hall as if it's sacred. There's an energy. Work. *sigh* Ballet. If you're working Giselle, for example. She's a girl who loved totally, and you put yourself in her place.
AND... (something, girl!) Ulanova: Counting: Yes. Up, Back. Anya, you're a (stupid) as always. Oksana, don't worry about your hands, pain. Oksana, your ankle, good.
OS: Classical was okay this morning. Ulanova was driving us. We did the bench, then swung our legs in different directions. Many new movements, so fast it takes your breath. And so beautiful. When the lesson was over, I've started losing weight again, she said, but I haven't. Well, maybe it's true. I'm 15 but I look like an 11 year old, tall for it's age. It can be dealt with. I come home and I'm so free, it's easy to eat, and I'm not afraid of getting fat. The first thing I do is fill myself. Mama, it's easier to eat with her. She calms me.
Ulaova: What a girl's being lost! Good legs, but you can't do anything with them. (Masha good.) WHAT Oksana? Stomach hurt? You need to leave.
OS: At the second lesson I felt sick and dizzy. Ulanova said I can't lose weight. But I'm not. (I don't want to?) It always just happens to me in the fall. She also said Christina can't lose weight. If she loses just a gram they're putting her in a hospital. Ulanova said the same to me. I stuffed myself yesterday, like a pig being fattened for sausage. I have to lose weight immediately! I'm a fat cow that doesn't consider it's future.

Telephone: Hello? Hi! I was measured. I'm 1.65 cm. I'm not telling you my weight. Yes. Good. Anyway. I'm Anya and Olya's height, and Alfimova's shorter that me AND Menshikova so it's GREAT! I thought I'd be the shortest.
Weigher: You have to put on weight so (trouble because of you). Don't let us all down. Including your mama! Do you get it? You have to get it into your head well: to grow you have to eat a little. A little. A little. You just have to eat a little. Nobody's saying you have to eat (tons)."

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