I've always been intrigued by the pride Russians seem to take in their athleticism and physical strength. From the Olympics to professional world championships, Russians have well established their excellence in many realms, from figure skating to dance to gymnastics. While playing around on YouTube the other day I found a clip that proved to me that these ideas start very early in Russia, and I think you'll be amazed by the acrobatics these young children have mastered for this dance.
I certainly don't have the answer, but something seems to make the Russians more agile and more skilled. Does it simply come from hours of practice, or is it something else? What's the X-factor? I certainly wish I could get my muscles to do that.
Recordings (w/ Keri Dillet)
Composition B - Dialogue - Ex. 3-7 (No. 2), p. 80
Dialogue 4 - p. 77