Getting to the Pointe: Amazing Ballet-Inspired Music Videos

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·Editor in Chief, Yahoo Music
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Last month, Taylor Swift premiered her Mark Romanek-directed, dancetastic new video for "Shake It Off," the lead single from her forthcoming '80s-inspired fifth album, 1989. The clip crams more dance styles into three minutes than you'd see in an entire episode of So You Think You Can Dance, with Taylor taking on cheerleading drills, rhythmic gymnastics, breakdancing, contemporary, the Robot, and — gasp! — a bit of (relatively G-rated) twerking. Look closely and you might even see T-Swizzle krump. But the always-elegant Taylor looks the most striking in a white-swan tutu, of course.

"Shake It Off" is actually just one in a long line of ballet-inspired music videos. And two new ballet-themed videos, by Coldplay and the Veronicas, have even come out in the short time since "Shake It Off's" release. Let's get to the pointe and check out some of the best ballet clips.

15. Pharrell, "Marilyn Monroe" (2014)

The impeccably leotarded, impossibly toned dancing girls in this video could inspire anyone to sign up for Cardio Barre classes. And they're a nice change of pace from the gyrating sexpots seen in most modern-day music videos, too.

14. Shinedown, "Second Chance" (2009)

If there's anything Flashdance taught us, it's that a working-class dancer should always follow her dream. That's exactly what the troubled young woman does here, finally leaving behind her dysfunctional family, lousy boyfriend, and soul-crushing day job to attend ballet school. What a feeling!

13. The Ocean Blue, "Ballerina Out of Control" (1991)

This ballerina doesn't seem out of control at all, instead just serenely dancing to this mellow early-'90s classic. But her moves are the perfect complement to the shoegazers' dreamy soundtrack.

12. Hurts, "Better Than Love" (2010)

This video by the British synthpop duo is a little cheesy, with its smoldering stares and S&M overtones. But it does tap into the darkness of ballet. If Black Swan had been a music video in 1982, instead of a movie in 2010, it might have looked like this.

11. The Veronicas, "You Ruin Me" (2014)

This Black Swan-inspired clip, shot at Sydney's State Theatre in twins Lisa and Jessica Origliasso's native Australia, peeks into the dark world of a company of jealous ballerinas and their evil dance teacher. Move over, Natalie Portman and Mila Kunis!

10. Coldplay, "True Love" (2014)

Chris Martin stars as an aspiring ballet dancer trapped in an inflatable fat suit. The video's happy ending proves that dancers can come in all shapes and sizes.

9. The Feeling, "Blue Murder/Boy Cried Wolf" (2013)

Move over, Billy Elliot! Edward Watson, the U.K.'s leading male ballet dancer, stuns as he dances shirtless around a North London hangar, lip-synching to the Britpop band's epic ballad.

8. Money, "Hold Me Forever" (2013)

Actor Cillian Murphy made his directorial debut lensing this simple but beautiful clip for Manchester dream-pop band Money, starring the English National Ballet and filmed at London's Old Vic Theatre.

7. Fleetwood Mac, "Gypsy" (1981)

Every tween girl of the '80s practiced twirling in front of her bedroom mirror after watching the pink-leg-warmered Stevie Nicks do it. While this video looks a little dated now, it was in fact the biggest-budget video in music history at the time. We still think Stevie's pirouettes are priceless.

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6. Kate Bush, "The Red Shoes" (1993)

No one ever quite put on her red shoes and danced the blues like the exquisite Kate. The diva's Red Shoes album was inspired by the 1948 film and Hans Christian Andersen fairytale of the same name, about an obsessed dancer unable to remove her ballet shoes and find peace. But if you looked this fabulous in a pair of ruby slippers, why would you ever want to take them off?

5. Lady Gaga, "Marry the Night" (2011)

It takes several minutes for the ballet sequence of this mini-movie to finally kick in, but it's worth the wait. And the oh-so-'80s rehearsal scenes that follow are straight out of Fame, Perfect, and Flashdance. We love this video so much, we'd marry it!

4. Florence & The Machine, "Spectrum" (2011)

In this stunning clip directed by David LaChapelle and John Byrne, members of California's Southland Ballet Academy/Festival Ballet Theatre twirl around the flame-haired Florence Welch, creating what looks like an indie-rock interpretation of the famous ballet The Firebird.

3. Sia, "Chandelier" (2014)

This is more contemporary dance than straight-up ballet, which is the only reason why it's not even higher up on this list. But Maddie Ziegler of Dance Moms definitely displays her formal training in this jaw-dropping, VMAs-baiting clip.

2. Kanye West, "Runaway" (2010)

'Ye may have been toasting the D-bags and the scumbags, but the rest of the viewing-video public was raising a glass to the amazing ballet troupe featured in his "Runaway" mini-movie. These ballerinas even managed to upstage Selita Ebanks! Later, they delighted passengers on an Australian flight when they executed a flashmob version of this dance in the friendly skies.

1. Kings of Convenience, "I'd Rather Dance With You" (2004)

Erlend Øye, the adorkable, tracksuited redhead who fronts this Norwegian duo, certainly doesn't seem classically trained. But he does have some charming moves. We dare you not to smile as he awkwardly frolics here with a troupe of pint-sized ballerinas. We have a feeling Taylor Swift would love this one.

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