25 Life Lessons I Learned From Ballet - #15
Beyond the arabesques and grand jetés, ballet is an abundant source of priceless life lessons. With the rigorous training and intense discipline it requires, ballet can teach one how to deal with pressure, disappointments, challenges, and ultimately, success. On her 25th anniversary as a professional dancer in 2009, prima ballerina Lisa Macuja-Elizalde took the time to list down 25 key lessons she learned from ballet and which she felt both dancers and non-dancers can apply in their own lives. This series shares those enduring nuggets of wisdom – one lesson at a time.
By Lisa Macuja-Elizalde
15. If the long-term goal seems too far away, break it down into smaller goals! Yes, Life’s journey is like a ballet choreography – it’s always made of individual steps – that should be taken one at a time.
Top photo: Kitri in Don Quixote, the character most identified with prima ballerina Lisa Macuja-Elizalde, is an extremely difficult role that requires stamina, endurance, and the highest levels of proficiency in technique. To prepare for her first Kitri in 1986, Lisa had to learn the various aspects of the choreography – a tall order made possible by breaking it down into small, achievable tasks. In this photo, she focused on the correct use of the fan under the watchful eye Gabriella Komleva, a Merited Artist of Russia. Photo from the Ballet Manila Archives collection