Dinner, Balanchine Style

Balanchine's "fish dinner for two." Yummy! (Photo by Paul LaRosa via

I’ve always been intrigued by dancers’ fascination with cooking. For all the talk about the dance world’s eating-disorder plague (a lot of it, unfortunately, merited), many dancers seem to find cooking (and eating) to be a great way to unwind after a stressful day at the studio. Gotta refuel after all that rehearsal, right?

Along those lines, here’s a delightful way to start your week: “Dinner with Mr. B.” The cute video (below) and accompanying blog post are the first in what will be a series. A group of bloggers and artists, led by Ryan Wenzel of and New York City Ballet soloist Antonio Carmena (who has legit skills—he’s a graduate of the French Culinary Institute), are cooking their way through The Ballet Cook Book, published in 1966. The book is a treasure trove of recipes submitted by ballet icons, compiled  by George Balanchine’s then-wife Tanaquil Le Clercq. Basically, the Ballet Cook Book dinner series is the dance-nerd version of Julie and Julia. Love it.

Balanchine was known for his cooking, and in the project’s first installment, the group makes some of Mr. B.’s own recipes: blinis, beet borschok (a sort of consommé), “fish dinner for two” and “banana sweet.” Most of it looks pretty delicious (maybe not the borschok, but hey, who knows). And the time-lapsed video documenting the process is adorable. Take a look!

About Margaret Fuhrer

Margaret Fuhrer is Dance Spirit's editor in chief.
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