Reading Dance: Bunheads by Sophie Flack

Reading about dance is a surprising unique experience, when you would expect to see a pique or pirouette turn on television or the theatre ,showing you the dancers steps, in reading about dance these actions are usually accompanied with a description of how it felt to watch the dance or how the dancers felt performing them. There is a sense of compensation to the fact that you can’t visually see the act itself, even though you do, however the gift of storytelling means you also get to experience the feeling behind the dance as well as see it in your minds eye. Although having had a visual experience of these steps is important in knowing what the writer is referring to, it is a beautiful thing when you read about dance. Knowing the research that must go into making a good story on dance its a gift to see behind the curtain to what dancers feel when they dance, and to experience another viewers interpretation of the art.



As a dancer with the ultra-prestigious Manhattan Ballet Company, nineteen-year-old Hannah Ward juggles intense rehearsals, dazzling performances and complicated backstage relationships. Up until now, Hannah has happily devoted her entire life to ballet.

But when she meets a handsome musician named Jacob, Hannah’s universe begins to change, and she must decide if she wants to compete against the other “bunheads” in the company for a star soloist spot or strike out on her own in the real world. Does she dare give up the gilded confines of the ballet for the freedoms of everyday life?


Bunheads is a story of a ballet dancer, Hannah, who dances for the Manhattan Dance company, one of the best dance companies in the world. The book follows Hannah as she excels in the art while wondering if the scarifies made to achieve this stardom is worth it. Sophie Flack writing helps us marvel in the almost draconian world the ballet sphere seems to be. Understanding the people that teach this form of dance and the dancers who choose to live it as a lifestyle.

Hannah having always wanting to dance from a very young age is full of promise and talent and as such is riddled with competition, pettiness and sabotage. We see a young woman struggle with the questions anyone who has found a passion is life eventually examines, is this all worth it? Am I good enough? Can it be done, or is this a pipe dream?

The story is a beautiful one to follow, its subtle and quite in its telling which is perfect for the subject it tells. Miss Flack lets the dance tell the story and that leaves for a unique experience indeed.

Like most good stories this one has been adapted for the screen in a television series with the same name.

4.5 Stars


Happy Reading!


2 thoughts on “Reading Dance: Bunheads by Sophie Flack

  1. I like the part where you say ‘ We see a young woman struggle with the questions anyone who has found a passion life eventually examines, is this all worth it? Am I good enough? Can it be done, or is this a pipe dream?’


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