Australian Ballet Responds to Critique of Dancers Being 'Unusually Thin'

'Commentary regarding body image is not acceptable,' said The Australian Ballet's Artisitc Director, David Hallberg.

By: May. 16, 2024
Australian Ballet Responds to Critique of Dancers Being 'Unusually Thin'
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The Australian Ballet has responded to criticism its dancers received in a recent review of  Études/Circle Electric.

The review, written by Sydney Morning Herald critic Chantal Nguyen, criticized many aspects of the production, but notably mentioned that the performers 'seem unusually thin this season.'

According to The Guardian, The Australian Ballet's Artisitc Director, David Hallberg, responded to this in a statement, saying,  “Commentary regarding body image is not acceptable and I am compelled to address this."

“Comments about weight, shape and body comparisons can have a serious negative impact on a person’s self-esteem and body image and can be detrimental to individuals’ mental and physical health," Hallberg said. “Professional ballet dancers, like other aesthetic athletes, are identified as a high-risk group for the development of body image concerns, disordered eating and eating disorders.”

Hallberg even noted that the Australian Ballet is working with the National Eating Disorders Collaboration to ensure that the performers remain healthy.

Furthermore, he spoke on ABC Breakfast on Thursday about this issue. 

"We welcome the critique of the art form. But unfortunately, we don’t welcome the critique of dancers’ bodies, shapes and sizes," he said.

Read the original story on The Guardian and listen to ABC Breakfast here.



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