I thoroughly enjoyed reading these two Black Swan reviews, both of which are written by ballerina’s. It really is great to hear from people who are steeped in that world.
The first review is from Wendy Whelan, a dancer for 20 years.
Natalie Portman is fantastic as Nina, a corps dancer struggling to rise to the challenge of dancing the principal role of the Swan Queen. The actress poured herself into serious ballet training to be able to embody the look of a professional dancer and she did a magnificent job of it. No real dancer I can imagine could have portrayed the depth of emotion this role required, it needed a great actress. But without the degree of devotion and discipline that she applied to the dance, Black Swan would never have achieved the heights that it does.
And the second review is from Ashely Bouder, the principal dancer for NYC Ballet.
The physicality of this profession is incredible, but it is above all else a form of art. And Black Swan touches on that so well. Don’t get me wrong, we ballerinas, each and every one of us, is a perfectionist. But to be too much that way can be a handicap and, in its extreme way, Black Swan nails it.