FYOS 1001                                                                                                 

Everything is Beautiful at the Ballet

Studio 267, Dance Bldg. 

Fall 2013 TH 2:00-4:00  

Joan Buttram, Instructor                                                          


542-4432 – Office 268

Office Hours MW 12:00-1:00





This seminar is a comprehensive introduction to the world of ballet. Historical information on ballet’s European beginnings and the renowned dancers and choreographers of the romantic, classical, modern, and neo-classical eras will be presented. In addition, present day ballets, ballet companies, backstage activities, costumes and set design will also be included. Seminar assignments will encourage the scholarly investigation of each era of ballet. Seminar activities will include movement sessions, ballet performances, both live and pre-recorded, and classroom discussions focused on the changing characteristics of ballet from one era to the next. Readings of dance historian Jennifer Homans’ recently published book Apollo’s Angels will highlight each session and pose her question as to whether the art of ballet is dying, or simply waiting for the next generation of artists to define a new era.



The student shall acquire intellectual and aesthetic benefits of researching ballet choreography and viewing ballet performances from the early ballets to today’s new contemporary work.



Class will meet each Thursday from 8/29-10/3 and consist of: a) lecture, b) viewing of select ballets and c) discussion.


8/29 – Ballets of the French Court. Romeo and Juliet

9/5 – Early Ballets. La Fille Mal Gardee

9/12 – Romantic Era. La Sylphide

9/19– Classical Era. La Bayadere

9/26 – Modern Ballet. Paris Dances Diaghilev

10/3 – Neo Classical Ballet. Jewels

10/10 – Contemporary Ballet. Song for Dead Warriors


The course syllabus is a general plan for the course; deviations announced to the class by the instructor may be deemed necessary.



As a University of Georgia student, you have agreed to abide by the University’s academic honesty policy, “A Culture of Honest,” and the Student Honor Code. All academic work must meet the standards described in “A Culture of Honesty” found at: www.uga.edu/honesty. Lack of knowledge of the academic honesty policy is not a reasonable explanation for a violation. Questions related to course assignments and the academic honesty policy should be directed to the instructor. The link to more detailed information about academic honesty can be found at: http://www.uga.edu/ovpi/honesty/acadhon.htm



Attendance to Ballet in Cinema production at Carmike Cinema Date TBA –signed ticket stub




Weekly Assignment


Six blog posts of one related You Tube dance link with a 50-word description are due each week by the time of that week’s class. In addition, the student is required to watch, read and respond to two other student’s post and commentary. Each assignment will be worth 20% of the final grade. Late posts will drop a letter grade each day until the report is submitted. Active participation and discussion of research will factor into the grade of each assignment and is essential to success in this course. Students are expected to interact with the professor and other students actively, consistently and productively. Students must prepare all assigned work and readings before class. Be prepared to give a written or oral summary in each class.


Everything is Beautiful at the Ballet Blog



login – maydance2010

password – 2013buttram



Attendance at 3 Campus Events


In order to better understand the interconnection between teaching, research and service at our university, students are required to attend and reflect on three campus events. Students will be given instructions for how to identify events taking place on our campus and the professor will notify students of any events that have particular relevance to course topics. Students must answer some questions about each event they attend. Questions and relevant guidelines will be provided in a separate handout. Attendance to three events and written reports are mandatory. The final grade will not be released until these 3 tasks are completed, i.e. the student will receive an incomplete for the course until the assignment is completed.




Attendance is required for each class meeting. Exceptions may be made in the case of a true emergency with provided documentation. It is the responsibility of the student to contact the professor and to make up missed work, including obtaining notes from class discussion. Each absence in excess of one will lower the final grade by one third per occurrence.




Joan Buttram, UGA Associate Professor of Dance, received her MFA in Pedagogy from Texas Christian University and a BFA in ballet performance/pedagogy from Virginia Intermont College. As a soloist/principal dancer, Joan performed with Dayton Ballet Company, Ballet Metropolitan, Lexington Ballet Company, Bristol Ballet Company and Ballet Concerto as well as the modern dance based Contemporary Dance/Fort Worth and the New Century Danscene. In 1982, she received the Vera Volkova Award for outstanding ballet performance. Joan’s choreography ranges from historic classical ballet reconstructions to eclectic original works often blending ballet with contemporary ballet styles, modern dance and national folk/character dances. Choreographic awards include the International Barcelona Dance Festival 2nd (2007), International Cortpo di Ballo Festival Tour of Southern Italy (2001), UGA Performing Arts Center (2002), National Endowment for the Art’s National College Choreography Initiative for choreographer Stanley Zompakos (2003), UGA Lily Fellows Program (1994), and The Atlanta Project (1993). Founding Artistic Director of the UGA Ballet Ensemble (1994), Joan has staged such classical works as La Bayadere, Giselle, La Sylphide, Les Sylphides, Paquita, Le Grand Pas de Quatre, The Nutcracker Suite and Firebird. She is a founding member of the CORPS de Ballet International, the sole academic organization for classical ballet. In residence on the faculty of the Department of Dance since 1991, Ms. Buttram continues to provide service to the ballet profession with positions on international, national, regional and state institutions.



  1. One

    I will say that she has dreams
    Because Bodies have relationship
    Because bodies shake off yesterday by getting clean

    I will say she has dreams
    Because bodies getting wet, need kisses

    I will say she has dreams
    Because when she knows
    I can hear them
    She speaks them

    She rubs them – honey – across my lips
    Because honey is a desire stolen by bees
    Gathered in combs
    Hung in trees

    I know she has dreams
    Knowing how to face up stage in perfect plie’
    Gathering sweat round where she is bound
    Counting four in perfect sympathy

    I will say she has dreams
    Watching her chest, fill with breath

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