Updated: Oct 31, 2020
There are many different types of pirouettes but below I will explain how to do an en dehor pirouette from fourth position.
1.START - The feet should be in fourth position with the arms in third opposition. The weight should be evenly on both feet. The pirouette is started by doing a plié in this position.
2. DEEPEN - Staying in fourth position, the plié is then deepened and the arms are taken to second position.
3. SNAP UP & TURN - Next the feet should be pushed into the floor to start the turn and then the back foot should snap up to retiré devant with the toe touching under the knee. The front foot should be held in a strong relevé position with the arms in first position.
4. TAKE CARE - Extra care should be taken to ensure that the turn out of the leg in retiré is held and that the foot is not over-crossed in front of the knee.
5. SPOT - Find a spot on the wall that you can keep bringing your focus back to as you continue to turn. This action of the head is called spotting and is crucial for a successful pirouette.
6. FINISH - There are two ways you can finish this pirouette. This is either in fourth or fifth position. If finishing in fourth bring the front foot back and lunge onto the supporting leg. The arms can be held in an open fourth position. If finishing in fifth (i.e. grade 4 bbodance pirouette exercise) then bring the retiré foot to the back finishing in fifth position and facing en face with the arms in bras bas.
At Balletic we follow the bbodance ballet syllabus which in turn uses the ‘Gail Grant Technical Manual and Dictionary of Classical Ballet‘ for all of it‘s terminology. Diagrams may be different to what you are used to based on the school of ballet that you follow.