It is a right of passage for every little girl who sticks with ballet long enough; she gets to wear a tutu, the ethereal spun sugar confection of which a million princess dreams are made.
For the boys, there is the dance belt.
A thong...yes, a thong, since the full bottom kind create what I suppose must be called, (forgive me little danseurs) "panty line" and in tights these lines are hideously apparent. Since other things are made much more apparent in tights as well, it is the job of the all important dance belt to preserve a gentleman's modesty and the sensibilities of the ballet audience who, while they may enjoy watching the dancer "fly" do not wish to see his junk do the same.
Not only that but dance belts, which are a kind of athletic supporter for dancers, can be a life saver when a ballerina's errant foot/knee/elbow makes contact with the wrong place.
Boys may not like the thong aspect, but without the protection afforded by a dance belt the 'Nut'cracker will do just that!
The whole dance belt situation just underscores the need for male ballet teachers, not only as role models, but for their practical experience in situations such as these.
How does one...er...situate oneself? Well don't look at ME?! While I can fake teaching the SP to shave, with the help of a leg razor and an indifference to embarrassment I can't even BEGIN to fake this one! For, while it may not have been my face I have shaved. I have never adjusted.
For those of you who follow this blog (and that means you are my son, so hey baby) here is a link to an interesting article from the New York Times on getting boys into ballet.