A year ago, my older son Leto showed an interest in ballet. He asked me if he could dance but I wasn’t sure how to go about getting him lessons. I had asked some advice from my cousin who is a dance instructor, but her school didn’t teach their age level (and didn’t seem to take boys). One of my youth girls is a ballerina and the ballet school she attends teaches boys starting at Micah’s age, so I looked into it. My in-laws were really excited for Leto and so they offered to pay for his lessons. There were summer classes available in which I signed Leto up for. He had so much fun and told me after his last summer class yesterday, “Ballet is the best!”
While Micah seemed uninterested in ballet at first, once he watched his big brother’s first class, he said he wanted to join in (he was really sad that he couldn’t dance, and didn’t really know what ballet was until he watched). Since they are nearly two years apart, they are at different levels and different classes, though some of what is taught is the same, and other things are different. My in-laws were willing to pay for his lessons as well (they are so very helpful to us in this, and I can’t thank them enough), so a few days after Leto’s first lesson, Micah gained his first and he has lots of fun and enjoys it so much too!
It seems that there is a stigma about boys who dance, especially ballet. It is truly sad that people I know even consider ballet to be “for girls,” but that is a great falsehood. The guys tend to shine and are very well known in the industry. A man even runs the school in which my boys attend (and he is married to a woman, to bunk the other stigma that boys who do ballet are “gay” even though I could list dozens of straight male dancers for you who are some of the most well known dancers). My boys each enjoy very “boyish” activities like soccer, race cars, trains, building, LEGOs, Star Wars, Transformers, video games, and more. They are boys through and through and just truly love dancing (even King David loved to dance in the Bible). Leto originally told me that he wanted to lift girls off of their feet and be very strong, just as the male dancers do in ballet. He giggles and jumps a lot in his classes and gets along really well with the girls. He was hoping more boys would be in his class, and the teacher let me know that she believes there is another boy who signed up for autumn classes in his age group! He is really excited about that. He doesn’t consider it girly at all and both of our boys even took a peek in to watch an older boy (maybe 12 years old) dance in another one of the studios at their school, in which they thought him to be so cool. If you are wondering what Rob thinks of all this, he is very proud of them and loves that they enjoy ballet.
In the pictures above, you see the girls in their classes. Each of them in the summer had different girls coming and going to the class, some which were there each week. They sometimes were alone with one other girl and other times they had up to 7 other girls in their class with them. The photos are from their last class, in which the parents could sit in to see up close what their children learned. She taught them various things to a story of Sleeping Beauty (the boys loved being “the prince”. .and no, they didn’t kiss the girls, they blew kisses with their hands). The girls were always nice to them and they were nice to the girls. They are very considerate of them and it is funny how some of the girls always want to sit next to them (Micah even has a favorite girl from his class who he says he always likes to be near, unless the teacher places them in other places at the beginning of class). It is really sweet. I think the only really hard challenge for them is stretching (at home too) so that one day they can do splits. Micah can spread his legs out further than Leto, but they’ll get there eventually. Autumn classes, here we come!