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five positions


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The standard positions of the feet in ballet date back to Beauchamps's identification at the end of the 17th century. In all five the legs and feet are turned out: 1st position: the heels touch with the feet ideally aiming to form a straight line; 2nd position: the feet are placed apart with the distance between the heels slightly less than hip-width; 3rd position: the feet cross so that the heel of the front foot fits the hollow of the instep of the back foot; 4th position: one foot is placed a small distance in front of the other (in 4th croisé the front heel is placed opposite the toe of the back foot, in 4th ouvert the front heel is opposite the heel of the back foot); 5th position: the feet are fully crossed and just touching each other so that the front heel fits against the base of the big toe of the back foot. Lifar attempted to introduce a 6th position where the feet are placed parallel side by side and the legs turned in; and a 7th, also parallel, where one foot is placed slightly forward of the other.

Subjects: Dance.


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