I just found the perfect still picture of what I previously accused Oxana Skorik of doing — sickling. Unfortunately the person who posted the photo gave no source, so I could not use it. Anyway, it showed a dancer with well-developed feet on pointe either in class or in rehearsal…balanced alarmingly on the outside of her left big toe. I mean WAY outside.
I’m seeing this a lot nowadays. I still think some of what I see is optical illusion caused by camera angles on heavily arched feet. But definitely a lot of girls are rising on pointe on the outsides of their big toes. It’s called pronation, I believe. The opposite is supination. (I may have this backward.) You don’t see that so much.
Given that the platforms on many (not all) modern pointe shoes are far wider than the platforms of the past, it seems to me that it would be pretty difficult not to hit the platform every time — particularly after years of training and preparation. It is also dangerous not to hit the platform squarely, but who needs to be told that?
If anyone reading this has more experience with pointe than I have (and I don’t have much), do you have an opinion as to why this seems to be happening? Are the shoes too helpful, making the dancer lazy? I can’t believe that the training is that bad. Are today’s dancers just so incredibly flexible that they can’t build up the proper muscles to keep them from doing things like this? Who knows?
All I know is, I’m hearing ankles go *crack* all the way from here.
P.S. — unrelated, but I just checked the Maryinsky’s playbill and found that Keenan Kampa makes what I believe is her debut as Kitri this month. Be prepared for a giant explosion from RBV! even though Kitri is a definite Ballerina 101 role. (It has, however, launched a few dancers to stardom — most notably Cynthia Harvey.)