Welcome to Barre None, my new video blog exclusively on Huffington Post. I'm Sara Mearns and I hope to be your tour guide into the world of classical ballet. You might ask yourself, "Why a video blog that goes behind the scenes of a classical ballet dancer's daily life?" Because what you see on the stage does not begin to capture what ballet or our lives are all about. You see the performance, but what you don't see -- the rehearsals, the costume designs, the frazzled nerves, the learning of a new ballet, the constant travels around the world, the injuries and the oftentimes long, painful road to recovery that lead us to wonder if this is the injury that can end a career -- it's all a part of what we do and who we are.
I'm only one dancer, but I hope that by giving you a window into my life as a principal ballerina at New York City Ballet, a door will be opened to more interest, curiosity, and enthusiasm for this artform that I, and so many others, love and work so hard for. So come on in, pull up a seat, and join me every Friday. You'll have a great time. I promise. Barre None.
New York City: Where Ballet and Fashion Meet
Fashion Week! So I have to admit that this is the glamorous part of what I do. But you can't deny that beauty attracts beauty, and something as beautiful as ballet will attract beautiful fashion designers such as Valentino, J. Mendel, Rodarte, and Stella McCartney...to name a few. I have had the privilege and honor to work with Valentino and Stella McCartney on costumes for brand new ballets for New York City Ballet (NYCB). Working with Valentino was like working with the god of beauty. He sketched whole dresses in front of us and knew every exact detail he wanted to be included. He was, and still is, in awe of our profession and even got emotional last night at The Sleeping Beauty when he came backstage after the show to say hi. To say that I am a part of his world in some way is a dream come true.
I also get to wear J. Mendel and Valentino gowns to our season galas in the fall and spring. Now, don't get me wrong. These are moments in time when somehow the stars line up, and I am in the right place at the right time to be apart of these opportunities. These are not regular occasions, and most of the time, on a daily basis, you will find me in black jeans and a t-shirt that an ex-boyfriend gave me. But I do love to dress up and look glamorous when the moment calls for it, and I am lucky enough to have access to beautiful things. This week, I was able to show you a glimpse of fashion week at Lincoln center and also behind the scenes at the opening of NYCB's production of The Sleeping Beauty. It is my 10th anniversary of performing the role of Lilac Fairy in The Sleeping Beauty. Wow! That's crazy for me to even write! Ten years! It is one of my favorite roles ever to play, and I hope I can do it for another 10 years.
Last thing I want to touch on is NYCB's costume department. The costumes that they produced this season are astounding. I might be bias because Marc Happel and Jason Hadley, director and manager of the costume department, are my dear friends and my support system, but they are also the backbone of the beauty that radiates from that stage every night. In my opinion, I feel the most beautiful when I have a gorgeous sparkly tutu on, topped off with a crown of jewels. They are the people who make that happen. I have a huge respect for the ladies and gentlemen who sew and fit our costumes and who make us feel beautiful. My mom made all my costumes and tutus growing up, so maybe that's where it all started. No matter if it's a Diamonds tutu or if it's just a black Agon leotard, the costume department will go to all lengths to make us feel good. Who wouldn't want that as part of your daily life?
Check out last week's video blog here.
You can find Sara Mearns on twitter here: @nycbstar2b.