Ballet West and Breaking Pointe

In another life time, I fancied myself a dancer.

Well maybe not a dancer, but a human with the potential to dance however irrythmically and awkwardly my own teenage uncoordination that may be. So yes, there was a tiny 13 year-old part of my heart estactic to learn about the CW’s latest reailty show “Breaking Pointe.” The show follows Salt Lake City’s very own Ballet West as they prepare for and perform in the spring of 2012.

The series is just six episodes long with a run time of about 45 minutes per episode available on Hulu. I absolutely loved the show. I can’t wait for season two and I hope the online chatter is enough for the CW to give the go ahead.

However this article  on DanceUSA discussing the pros and cons of the show got me thinking about just what it is and isn’t that works in “Breaking Pointe.” I am after all the target audience for the CW and this is the only thing I’ve watched from the network in over a year. The things I love about the show are pretty basic. First of all what tiny bit of dancing is shown is absolutely spectacular. Beckanne is flawless and I could watch her move all day. Christianna is also beautiful with fantastic lines that are probably the envy of every dancer ever. The rest of the dancers are also absurdly talented and inspiring to watch.

I also enjoy the drama.

That Ronnie kid, man, he is kind of a beautiful jerkface. He is so DRAMATIC! I love, love the clip of him discussing the on again, off again romance of Rex and Allison. I kind of want to just have some beers and bullshit with Ronnie for a bit. And maybe make him pole dance.

Oh my god, and I totally want to be besties with Beckanne and Katie. I love them! They are the best, best friends–a gorgeous girl-mance.)

However it has to be said, I spent most of episodes four through six screaming at Allison and Rex to just end their bizarre relationship. It is so obvious that they are incapable and unwilling of making their relationship work in a way that is actually a positive experience for both of them. Seriously, show, seriously, just stop. It is way too much. (Also Allison, Rex, will you two please just leave each other alone? This doesn’t seem like a good relationship for either of you.) I groaned out loud at one point when they’re were having yet another “talk.”

In other romantic tangles, there is the sweet young love of Katie and Ron. They are just so damn cute and happy together. (And Katie has amazing hair!) Plus there is the most adorable, supporting couple of Christianna and Chris. The episode where they are discussing post-ballet life in Zy.  I was actually crying because Chris is so supportive and sweet of Christianna. I just can’t imagine having that much passion for anything or anyone, I admire them so much.

Finally in the things I love, Salt Lake City! This show is probably some of the best pr the city has ever gotten. The B-roll is gorgeous! The filming makes me want to live here! And the cast has wonderful taste in hanging out at all my favorite bars and restaurants. (Just kidding. The ballet peeps really need to karaoke at Cheers sometime. Also Club Jam. That would be awesome.) The show highlights some of the best parts of SLC, even if they are a little hard to find some days.

Now on to the things I don’t like.

The dancing! It has to be said the show spends way more time on drama than it does on dancing. I really wanted to see at least one complete performance. (Not the entire ballet, but like a full dance.) I was so excited for Petite Mort and Emeralds, but then it comes performance time and nothing. I swear, it felt like 30 seconds of pretty than back to Rex/Allison will she/won’t she. Urgh! I need jumping, spinning, prettiness and music, not petty stupid relationship crap.

Come on, CW, make a show about ballet and let it be about ballet.

That’s all I’m asking.

I’ve also read on the interwebs about how the show didn’t have enough story for its six episode run. And I’m not so sure that’s true. For the finale, I was hoping (again) to see a full performance since I was cheated in the opening night ep. But again, I was left wishing for more dance. The last episode really is a total bummer after all the potential for gorgeous music, costume and dance time. They’re is so much buildup to the actual performances and they don’t show them! I felt so cheated!

I need more dance in my life.

On that note, I do think the show is pretty successful in what it set out to do, which ostensibly is to interest younger people in dance. I have looked up Ballet West tickets since watching “Breaking Pointe.” They are still too expensive for my struggling writer’s budget. (Ballet West should also think about doing more of a TV tie in if they want a second season. Ticket giveaway, please!) But I’ve also thought about taking a dance class again. I never thought I would be looking up dance classes at a ballet company. (Still too expensive!) And I now know a little bit more about ballet, something I never thought I would. So if anyone ever asks me about Russian ballet, I can be like, “Oh! Paquita! Pretty costumes! Hard!”

I’m keeping my fingers crossed for a second season. But with a caveat, CW follow the trail of better sophomoric shows and figure out that a show about dance needs more dance.

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