In the beginning, ballet dancers would dress in long heavy dresses, down to the floor. In the 1700s, a Belgium dancer named Marie-Anne Cupis De Camargo shortened her dress just enough so people could see her fancy footwork. It was only short enough to show her ankles, but the audience was still shocked. In the 1800s, dancers started wearing "Romantic Tutus," which are long, fluffy, lightweight skirts. These skirts became shorter and shorter and a lot stiffer until eventually the skirt stuck straight out. This is now called the "Classic Tutu."
"Ballet is interesting because it can be seen both as an enclave of whiteness and privilege, and as an outrunner of change. Excellence in dance doesn’t require mastery of any one specific verbal language before talent can be seen so, like sport and unlike much of business, it’s a leveler."