11 MARCH 1966, Page 15

Balanchine on Ballet

SIR,— In your February 18 issue (which contains a review of my novel Two People) Clement Crisp refers in his ballet column to a statement by Balanchine on the law of optics for dancing and adds that he does not remember where Balanchine made it. It is in Notes on Choreography, 'by' George Balanchine. which I wrote for him twenty years ago when I was editing Lincoln Kirstein's magazine Dance Index.

Balanchine. crystal clear in his ideas, nevertheless did not trust his English. At the School of American B411e17 he told me what he wanted to say, I wrote it down and read it aloud to him when he finished leaching his morning class; he corrected it, sen- tence by sentence, and this went on for several weeks until he was satisfied. The article is in the magazine's February-March 1945 issue; the state- ment Mr. Crisp refers to is in the last paragraph.