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Last updated at 12:53 BST, Friday, 28 October 2011

Dancing into history

Video

Report and vocabulary

transcript

An historic leap! American David Hallberg will soon be in the limelight as the first foreign principal dancer of Russia's Bolshoi ballet company.

At the height of the Cold War, 50 years ago, when Russian dancer Rudolf Nureyev defected to the West, an American dancer in Moscow would have been unimaginable.

But now Hallberg has the opportunity to wow the Bolshoi's fans.

leap

a leap is a big jump but it can also be used to suggest a sudden change.

in the limelight

limelight was originally a form of stage lighting before electricity. The expression 'in the limelight' now means being 'the centre of attention'.

at the height of

at the time when the situation was at its most intense.

defected

left a country with a particular political regime in order to escape that system.

to wow

to please, to impress.

Exercise

Use one of the words or phrases below to complete each of these sentences from a BBC news report.

Note that you may have to change the form of a word to complete the sentence correctly.

leap / in the limelight / at the height of / defected/ to wow

1.

North Korea has denied sending spies into South Korea to murder the most senior official ever _____________ from the Communist country.

2.

It's certainly the case that the way most brides and grooms choose to preserve their brief moment _____________ has been evolving, away from the stuffy and predictable.

3.

"It gets people on board to have a look and they're ___________ by it. It's showing people that these boats are affordable, that they're not just for billionaires."

4.

Many see Australia moving away from its old allegiances, towards a future firmly within the Asian region. But can it make the emotional and cultural _______ to replace Europe and America at the centre of its consciousness with Asia?

5.

The Pistols, having recently sworn on tea-time telly, were ____________ their notoriety, many of the tour dates were cancelled, and protesters gathered to sing carols and pray for the misguided souls inside the town's Castle Cinema.

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Exercise

Answers

How did you do?

1

to defect

2

in the limelight

3

wowed

4

leap

5

at the height of