There are many props used in ballet, but one of the most iconic is the ballet fan used by Kitri in her third act variation in Don Quixote. Learning this variation is somewhat a rite of passage for budding ballerinas. During my years as a teacher, I have worked on Kitri’s famous solo numerous times, beginning on demi-pointe with younger dancers and then building upon it over the years as they advance on to pointe. Students tend to love it – the music is instantly recognizable, there’s an acting component that allows them to be feminine and sassy, and they look forward to using the fan. What they don’t often expect are the challenges that come along with coordinating the technicality of the dance and the manipulation of the fan. It’s quite fun observing their process as all the parts of the piece slowly but surely come together. Ballet Met’s video below may be a good reference for both students and professionals alike.