[W]hen you take a ballerina by the wrists it shouldn’t look like you are riding a motorcycle.
Never paddle a ballerina in a turn. Stir her discreetly with your finger in finger turns, not like you have a spoon and she is a pot of soup.
I can’t quite picture what paddling a ballerina would look like. But that probably just indicates how ignorant I am of the art. Plus maybe I like imagining a ballerina as a canoe?
Soto says he finds himself using cooking metaphors while he teaches. I imagine Soto quietly giving the advice above, then shouting when the boys are on the floor.
”Don’t stir her like a pot of soup! She is not a pot of soup!”
“Don’t stand there like a frozen fish stick!”
When an ensemble exercise with eighteen boys was horribly executed I stopped them and scolded: “You’re not supposed to look like popcorn!”
source: Every Step You Take: a memoir by Jock Soto