Attended a live performance of Swan Lake yesterday and was surprised at how different the womens’ and mens’ movements were. Man or woman – performing any work of art such that it completely mesmerizes the audience takes a lot of perseverance and hard work. And mesmerized I was, no doubt. But I also found myself wondering if this was an art form that was way more demanding of its female dancers. While the men had their feet flat on the ground most of the time, the women were on their big toes for most of the performance. They did twists, turns, and complex maneuvers while they were precariously balanced on their big toes. And sometimes their entire body weight was supported by a single toe! As someone who cannot even look at heels without wincing, I am amazed at these women who walk and dance on their big toes for hours at a time… And here I thought, dancing was all play and fun!

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