Who can fail to be captivated by a prima ballerina as she takes center stage? Whether it's Pavlova or Fonteyn, Tallchief or Farrell, their names become legends that shine on long after the final curtain has fallen.
The world of a ballet dancer is a fascinating mix of elegance and pitiless hard work. Although those leaps and pirouettes look effortless as the ballerina takes on the role of a bird, snowflake or a carefree young princess, off-stage she mops the sweat and winces at an old injury or a fresh one.
Living the dream of every little girl comes at a cost and the dreams of the woman are often shelved, at least for a while. Natural grace alone is not enough, and years of dedication and intense physical work are needed to shape a promising dancer into the prima ballerina who draws crowds by the very mention of her name.