BLOGMAS Day II: Ballet a la Russe & Mango Languages

So, I went out today to try to find an Advent calendar that I like, but couldn’t find any! I searched at World Market, HomeGoods, and TJ Max but found nothing. Actually, I did find something at World Market, but it was over $40.00USD and I wasn’t getting that (especially when it looked like it could be $15.00USD).

Anyways, I got up very late today (4:15pm EST) because I worked last night (working nights just messes up my sleep schedule). I wasn’t in any real rush to get up, so sleeping in was nice. I do have two International Relation courses that I need to do.

That’s what sometimes sucks about online courses, the calendar schedule for the courses do not always follow the traditional academic year. While most of my friends are either done with school or doing finals through next week, I still have until December 30th until my classes are finished, then my next set of classes start in the first week of January. No winter break for me!

YouTube Series: Ballet a la Russe

So for the past couple of days I’ve been binging on Russian ballet on YouTube. Why might you ask? Well…I don’t know lol.

I’ve been interested in learning the Russian language since I was 15 after I read “буря” which means “storm” in Russian in a Vampire Academy novel (Shadow Kiss Book #3). It was the first language I was exposed to aside from English, Spanish, and Italian. (I mean obviously I knew other languages existed, but being exposed to them either by hearing or seeing them is what I’m referring to).

So, back to Russian ballet, there’s this RT Documentary series called “Ballet a la Russe” which is French for “Russian Ballet” that I discovered a couple years ago. It’s so interesting and follows the lives of some prima/principal ballerinas and ballet dancers at a couple of Russia’s most famous ballet academies and production companies.

There’s 10 episodes total, my favorites being episodes 4 and 5, which revolve around the Russian Ballet Theater company doing their annual Christmas tour through Europe (primarily Germany).

Ballet a la Russe Episode 4 from YouTube

Ballet a la Russe Episode 5 from YouTube

Aside from the amazing performances, it’s really interesting (and amusing) to watch the behind-the-scenes of ballerinas. I’m also interested in the language and it’s a great way to pick up some phrases, sentences, and be more exposed to the language overall.

A Mango Note

One of my 2020 goals is to get better at understanding and speaking Russian. I bought myself a mini-Christmas gift which was the 3 month subscription to Rosetta Stone (which was on sale, otherwise I wouldn’t have bothered cause it’s overpriced).

Here’s a good language learning source that I recommend:

Mango Languages

Mango Logo

Mango Languages is by far one of my favorite apps and language learning programs. It is catered more towards adult language learning by starting out with sentences and useful phrases that we as adults already know, as opposed to Rosetta Stone’s “dog….cat…boy…girl” which isn’t exactly a very effective way for ADULTS to learn a language.

The subscription pricing for this (Individual Price) is $7.99USD a month for ONE language. If you wanted to get access to the FULL language catalog then it would be $17.99USD.


CHECK YOUR PUBIC LIBRARY!! For instance, at Fairfax County Public Library you get access to Mango’s software for FREE! The entire language list, EVERYTHING!! All you need is to have a library card.

I am going to dedicate an entire post tomorrow on library resources because honestly a lot of people need to know. There’s so much free shit through libraries and so much opportunities and offerings. So, stay tuned for that!

Anyways, back to the subject at hand. Check out your local library to see if they have an affiliation with Mango so your library can sponsor you for free!

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