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  2. Truly, we shall not see her like again: Related. The first article also mentioned that Kakutani was uncomfortable with some of the additional web-based demands now being made on the Times' critics; she does not care for public speaking and was not at ease with stuff like the chatty "25 Best Books/Movies/Whatever" discussions the paper is now asking its writers to do together.
  3. Wednesday, August 16

    Eric Underwood is leaving the Royal Ballet. Related in brief.
  4. Tuesday, August 15

    Q&A with Gemma Bond and Isabella Boylston.
  5. Fall 2017 Season

    If I had money, and could clone myself, I know where I would be.
  6. Mariinsky in London 2017

    That's my question as well -- is this new choreography, or is he ringing changes on the Bolshoi's current production?
  7. Eliot Feld

    Any one of those accomplishments would deserve the thanks of a grateful dance community, but put together they are the biography of someone who has made significant contributions to the field in his lifetime. While it looks like the bulk of Feld's choreographic work will not last much past the artist himself, I'm thinking that we are already the beneficiaries of his choreographic life, in that he created works that nurtured the dancers of his time, and helped the audience to see the shifting aesthetic. Many of us who live near a company with a resident company have this experience frequently -- while the dances that are being made are not necessarily masterworks, they are part of the body of dance at their time. Or as my sister says when she makes something new for her family, not every dinner is a winner. But I can't help being curious about these works in the past, both on their own merits, and as reinforcement for the developments to come. It's a self-reinforcing system -- dancers are trained to perform the works being performed at the time, and then become the material that choreographers use to make new works. What doesn't always get the same attention is that this also works for audiences. We learn to understand dances by watching dances -- and the dances we watch are the fundamental tools we use to understand other works we see later. I compare the works I see today to the works I saw in the past -- I may think they are "better" or "worse," but I use my early experiences as a landmark.
  8. Today
  9. As far as who does the traveling, I do know that several cities/arts agencies keep track of those numbers, and use them in civic discussions about arts support. In Seattle (my home town) our local opera company has produced Wagner's Ring cycle on a fairly regular basis -- it's an extreme example of an art work that people will travel miles to see, but even leaving it out, the local arts agencies have said that arts tourism generates as much revenue for the city as sports tourism on a regular basis (and sometimes outstrips it). So yes, there are people who are traveling to see dance, but that has a tendency to reinforce the idea that the arts are for those who can afford them -- not the policy I'd like to see supported. I'd have to do some homework to find more concrete numbers.
  10. Fall 2017 Season

  11. Fall 2017 Season

    Casting released: CASTING ANNOUNCED FOR AMERICAN BALLET THEATRE’S 2017 FALL SEASON AT DAVID H. KOCH THEATER Casting for American Ballet Theatre’s 2017 Fall Season at the David H. Koch Theater was announced today by Artistic Director Kevin McKenzie. American Ballet Theatre opens its Fall season on Wednesday, October 18 at 6:30 P.M. with a special opening night Gala performance highlighted by the World Premiere of a new work by Artist in Residence Alexei Ratmansky. The work for twelve dancers will be led by Isabella Boylston and Alban Lendorf at the World Premiere. Christine Shevchenko and Calvin Royal III will debut in the roles at the matinee on Saturday, October 21. Ratmansky’s new work is set to new music Bukovinian Songs (24 Preludes for Piano) by Leonid Desyatnikov, performed live by guest soloist Alexey Goribol. The Opening Night Gala will also feature the World Premiere of a new work by Jessica Lang performed by ABT apprentices, the ABT Studio Company and students from the upper level of the ABT Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School. Christopher Wheeldon’s Thirteen Diversions will round out the opening night program with Sarah Lane, Misty Copeland, Stella Abrera, Skylar Brandt, Joseph Gorak, Gray Davis, Thomas Forster and Zhiyao Zhang in the leading roles. American Ballet Theatre will give the season’s first performance of Jessica Lang’s Her Notes on Thursday evening, October 19 danced by Gillian Murphy, Misty Copeland, Devon Teuscher, Stephanie Williams, Skylar Brandt, Cassandra Trenary, Thomas Forster, Gabe Stone Shayer, Cory Stearns and Blaine Hoven. The October 19 performance will mark debuts by Forster and Shayer in the ballet. On Friday evening, October 20, Luciana Paris and Catherine Hurlin will dance the ballet for the first time, alongside Stella Abrera, Christine Shevchenko, Stephanie Williams, Sarah Lane, James Whiteside, Arron Scott, Alexandre Hammoudi and Calvin Royal III. Set to music by Fanny Mendelssohn, with costumes by Bradon McDonald, scenery by Lang and lighting design by Nicole Pearce, Her Notes received its World Premiere on October 20, 2016 at the Koch Theater in New York City. Misty Copeland, Christine Shevchenko, Luciana Paris, Arron Scott, Calvin Royal III and Joseph Gorak will dance the season’s first performance of Frederick Ashton’s Symphonic Variations on Thursday evening, October 19, with Scott and Gorak making debuts. Symphonic Variations is set to music by César Franck, with costumes by Sophie Fedorovitch and lighting by Michael Somes. A plotless ballet for six dancers, Symphonic Variations was given its World Premiere by the Sadler’s Wells Ballet in London on April 24, 1946. It was first performed by American Ballet Theatre at the Civic Opera House in Chicago, Illinois on March 20, 1992. The ballet is staged for ABT by Wendy Somes and Malin Thoors. Hee Seo will debut in Jerome Robbins’ Other Dances performing opposite David Hallberg on Thursday evening, October 19. On Thursday evening, October 26, Cory Stearns will dance the male lead for the first time alongside Gillian Murphy. Set to a waltz and four mazurkas by Frédéric Chopin, Other Dances features costumes by Santo Loquasto and original lighting by Nananne Porcher. The plotless, classical character pas de deux was created by Robbins for a Gala evening for the Library for the Performing Arts at Lincoln Center at the Metropolitan Opera House on May 9, 1976, performed by Natalia Makarova and Mikhail Baryshnikov. Other Dances is staged for American Ballet Theatre by Isabelle Guerin. On Thursday evening, October 19, Herman Cornejo, Alban Lendorf in a role debut, Blaine Hoven, Calvin Royal III, Gabe Stone Shayer, Daniil Simkin, James Whiteside and Devon Teuscher will dance the season’s first performance of Ratmansky’s Serenade after Plato’s Symposium. Zhiyao Zhang in a role debut, Alexandre Hammoudi, Thomas Forster, Jose Sebastian, Tyler Maloney, Arron Scott, Joseph Gorak and Hee Seo take over the same roles at the matinee on Saturday, October 21. Set to music by Leonard Bernstein, the ballet features scenery and costumes by Jérôme Kaplan and lighting by Brad Fields. Serenade after Plato’s Symposium received its World Premiere by American Ballet Theatre on May 16, 2016 at the Metropolitan Opera House. Liam Scarlett’s Elegy pas de deux, from his 2014 work With a Chance of Rain will receive its first performance of the season on Tuesday, October 24 performed by Hee Seo and Roman Zhurbin in a role debut. Thomas Forster will debut in the ballet at the matinee of Saturday, October 28. Set to music by Sergei Rachmaninoff, the ballet features costumes by Scarlett and lighting by Brad Fields. Scarlett’s complete work was given its World Premiere by American Ballet Theatre on October 22, 2014. The World Premiere of a new work by Benjamin Millepied will be given on Wednesday evening, October 25 with Devon Teuscher, Misty Copeland, Hee Seo, David Hallberg, Herman Cornejo and Cory Stearns in the leading roles. Stephanie Williams, Cassandra Trenary, Catherine Hurlin, Blaine Hoven, Daniil Simkin and Alexandre Hammoudi will debut in the roles at the matinee on October 28. The new Millepied work, set to music by Philip Glass, features costumes by Alessandro Sartori, Artistic Director of Italian luxury brand Ermenegildo Zegna and lighting by Brad Fields. Last season’s Company Premiere of Ratmansky’s Souvenir d’un lieu cher will return to the repertory on Wednesday evening, October 25 performed by Stella Abrera, Sarah Lane, Thomas Forster in a role debut and Alban Lendorf. Souvenir d’un lieu cher is set to music of the same name by Peter Ilyitch Tchaikovsky, orchestrated by Alexander Glazunov. Featuring sets and costumes by Keso Dekker with lighting by James F. Ingalls, the ballet for four dancers received its World Premiere by Het National Ballet on February 16, 2012 in Amsterdam. Millepied’s Daphnis and Chloe will be performed for the first time during the Fall season on Wednesday evening, October 25 featuring Stella Abrera, Cassandra Trenary, Cory Stearns and Calvin Royal III and Herman Cornejo making role debuts as Dorcon and Bryaxis respectively. Isabella Boylston, Skylar Brandt, Blaine Hoven and Arron Scott take over these roles on Thursday evening, October 26 with James Whiteside debuting as Daphnis. Set to music by Maurice Ravel, Daphnis and Chloe features costumes by Holly Hynes, scenery by Daniel Buren and lighting by Brad Fields. Daphnis and Chloe, adapted from the second century A.D. novel by the Greek writer Longus, was choreographed by Millepied for the Paris Opera Ballet in 2014. Daphnis and Chloe was originally commissioned in 1912 by Serge Diaghilev for the Ballets Russes. The ballet, which is staged for ABT by Janie Taylor and Sebastien Marcovici, was given its Company Premiere on October 20, 2016 at the Koch Theater. Tickets for American Ballet Theatre’s 2017 Fall season at the David H. Koch Theater, priced from $25, are available online, at the Koch Theater box office or by phone at 212-496-0600. Performance-only tickets for the Opening Night Gala begin at $25. The David H. Koch Theater is located at Lincoln Center, Broadway and 63rd Street in New York City. For more information, visit ABT’s website at www.abt.org Leadership support for Serenade after Plato’s Symposium and Ratmansky’s World Premiere, part of The Ratmansky Project, has been provided by Mr. and Mrs. Hamilton E. James and the Blavatnik Family Foundation, with additional support provided by Linda Allard, Sarah Arison, Avery and Andrew F. Barth, Lisa and Dick Cashin, The Susan and Leonard Feinstein Foundation, Brian J. Heidtke, Lloyd E. Rigler – Lawrence E. Deutsch Foundation, Bernard L. Schwartz, The Ted and Mary Jo Shen Charitable Gift Fund, Melissa A. Smith, The H. Russell Smith Foundation/Stewart R. Smith and Robin A. Ferracone, Martin and Toni Sosnoff Foundation, and Sutton Stracke. Daphnis and Chloe has been generously supported by The Leila and Mickey Straus Family Charitable Trust and through an endowed gift from the Toni and Martin Sosnoff New Works Fund. Her Notes was commissioned with leadership support from the Virginia B. Toulmin Foundation. This production has been generously supported through an endowed gift from the Toni and Martin Sosnoff New Works Fund. American Airlines is the Official Airline of American Ballet Theatre. Northern Trust is the Leading Corporate Sponsor of the American Ballet Theatre Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis School. ABT is supported, in part, with public funds from the National Endowment for the Arts; the New York State Council on the Arts with the support of Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York State Legislature; and the New York City Department of Cultural Affairs in partnership with the City Council.
  12. Mariinsky in London 2017

    There is no credits info yet on Ratmansky R&J under Balshoy repertory tab. This R&J will be cinecast next January 21st : http://www.telegraph.co.uk/dance/what-to-see/watch-bolshoi-ballet-preview-ballet-cinema-season-world-premiere/ May very well be the NBC staging but I doubt whether Balshoy would mention that. Will enquire from friends in Moscow.
  13. Mariinsky in London 2017

    Will it be the version he created for National Ballet of Canada?
  14. Eliot Feld

    I've enjoyed what I've seen of Feld's choreography, especially The Unanswered Question (NYT review here), but I suspect he won't be considered a capital-M major dance-maker once the dust has settled on his generation of choreographers. His truest and best legacy lies elsewhere: Ballet Tech, which is now part of NYC's public school system. Here's a recent NY Times #SpeakingInDance item featuring three of the school's students performing some of Feld's '80's choreography. Here's a TDF article about the school and its mission. And, he was one of the founders of The Joyce.
  15. Joy Womack

    Watched Joy Womack, with her partner, Alexey Lyubimov, a soloist from the Stanislavsky Ballet of Moscow, dancing the Black Swan Pas de Deux at the Asian Grand Prix. Albeit, the video was a la Womack from the wings; however, in my view, anyone who pulls her dancing apart is simply not on. She has become a dancer to be reckoned with. My hope is that she will tone down her vlogging -- preferably end it -- and continue her career, for now, in Moscow at the Kremlin or other ballet company in Russia. She invested so much to obtain that Russian connection. It is why she is where she is today.
  16. NEA Study Finds a Drop in Arts Attendance

    Interesting, Sandik. I too, would have to mull that over, wondering what kind of effect that change might have had. And how and why it took place (economics, no doubt). I also wonder if ballet companies now assume that since we all seem more mobile than back in the days of Hurok, et al., that audiences can simply be expected to come to them, rather than vice versa. If there is that assumption, I wonder if it is working out as assumed. (Just wanted to add a telling incident here in my small city.... I moved here several years ago, and decided to start a ballet class for adults (not liking 'retirement'), I told a new acquaintance about it. She is a very intelligent woman, a yoga teacher. She looked at me visibly startled, and said, "Ballet for adults? But ballet is just for children!).
  17. Why So LIttle Massine?

    And now I'm wondering if there are any contemporary choreographers that people feel have a similar relationship with music?
  18. Mariinsky in London 2017

    Balshoy has scheduled Romeo&Juliet for 22-26 November which my friend in Moscow says will be the new staging by Ratmansky ....... awaiting that one with trepidation ! Current Grigarovich version of R&J is imho a non-starter, has made a hash of the beautiful Lavrovsky original. I definitely belong in the "if it ain't broke don't fix it" school !
  19. Eliot Feld

    "Narrator seems to out-Edward R Murrow Ed Murrow." Snark! "Making Dances" is indeed a wonderful film -- one of the best looks at the big names of post-modern dance. That, and the Dance in America documentary "Beyond the Mainstream" (which is very hard to find anywhere -- here's a tiny slice of David Gordon and Valda Setterfield in Chair) are excellent examinations of that time and those artists.
  20. I've been mulling this over, and I had a little epiphany about touring. Back when the big companies were appearing all over, they weren't organizing these tours themselves. There were organizations like Hurok and Columbia that were doing the heavy lifting -- making the connections, booking the theaters, doing the advance promotion. Now, when a company like ABT does tour, I don't know that they have the same relationship with a promoter. I'd have to do some homework, but my intuition is that there is much more direct contact between the company and the local institution. Especially when it's an ongoing relationship, like the Segerstrom in California. Now rather than a long tour with multiple appearances that requires a certain ongoing coordination, it's more like a series of run-outs -- fly here and go home, fly there and go home.
  21. Why So LIttle Massine?

    Asking forgiveness for presenting a wall of text--I'll restrain myself after this--but I've run across a page which I feel puts across the essence of what Massine was doing with music vis-à-vis dance. (From Massine a Biography, by Vicente Garcia-Marquez, p. 122; the text relates to 1919, London.) "[...] In the evening the company presented its first performance, Les Femmes de bonne humeur, with a new, more realistic décor by Bakst. To Diaghilev's immense relief and deep satisfaction, Les Femmes and its dancers were a sensation. The ballet's cinematic movements and simultaneous action were a revelation to British balletomanes. Wrote The Observer: 'The merry adventures are unfolded with a rapidity of action that only perfect precision can sustain, and it is this precision with which every gesture is linked to its accompanying musical phrase that is the secret of this remarkable feat of stage production . . . The result is not only a brilliant work of art, but the most exhilarating entertainment. Wordless wit is not easy of accomplishment, but Massine's choreography has attained to it.' Still, the work's distinctive style and rhythm took the general public by surprise, and even ballet aficionados found it a bit puzzling. The dance historian Cyril Beaumont described his own first impression: 'I was not sure whether I liked the ballet or not. The unusual speed of the performance was a little bewildering, and I could not get accustomed to the jerky, puppetlike quality of Massine's choreography, so different from the rounded and flowing movements of Fokine's compositions.' Only after repeated viewing did he determine that Massine's 'dances did far more than accompany the music and accord with its rhythmical structure; they really translated the spirit of the music in terms of choreography.'" This is just what I get from Massine: Not dancing accompanying music, but dancing which is a representation of the music and its spirit, an incarnation of the music in dance terms, a presentation in which the music and the dance have become one.
  22. Yesterday
  23. SFB 2017 Summer

    Look who will be on the cover of the September 2017 Dance Magazine: "I don't do average"
  24. I've seen plenty of comments about how much people enjoy watching the classes, and users have been unhappy about SFB editing away much of the class time in the "highlights" video they eventually release on YouTube. Felips Diaz runs such a great class that it is understandable for ballet aficionados to want to watch the entire thing. Video of NBC in Paris would be especially interesting to me - I would love to see a "countdown to performance" as you mentioned.
  25. Mariinsky in London 2017

    Neither am but some of these ballets still seem to me somewhat less boring than others. (I'd rather see a ballerina I admire in Neumeier's Dame aux Camelias than Macmillan's Manon.) Still, It's hard for me even to say if I think Ratmansky's is "less boring" than, say, Onegin because the music is (to my ears) so unremittingly grim--which I found very daunting. But I did think Kondaurova was well worth seeing in it anyway. And I liked what I took to be Ratmansky's allusions to the traditions of the Royal Danish Ballet -- the company on which he set the ballet. But he has choreographed far more successful ballets for sure.
  26. Mariinsky in London 2017

    I saw AK last year in SP's White Nights festival...and just found it to be a bore. But again...I have never been a fan of the XIX century literature "dark gowns" ballet adaptations.
  27. World Ballet Day Live - 5 October 2017

    That's true. YouTube suggests up to 40 other videos to watch, and I don't take up the suggestions all that often, but I've made some really splendid discoveries through those links. I don't know how last year's live-on-Facebook numbers compared with previous years' live-on-YouTube numbers. Supposedly more people were "engaged," although I don't know how long the average viewing was. There were far more "on-demand" (i.e., YouTube) views than live views. I do recall that some people encountered streaming difficulties with the Facebook feeds. I would be curious to know how many on-demand views the Bolshoi's segment received after it was moved to a different site and behind a password. The Bolshoi's video site doesn't indicate how many times a video has been watched. I do know that the ballet class from Royal Ballet Live, the precursor of World Ballet Live, has been "viewed" on YouTube more than 3 million times, which is rather the point of doing these sorts of broadcasts. I think it's a safe bet that nothing on the Bolshoi's resource has been watched nearly as often. From the point of view of outreach or promotion, the Bolshoi's position counterproductive, but that's politics. Probably copyright, too. YouTube videos are easy enough to download. The Bolshoi hasn't shut down its YouTube channel. It's just the marquee streams that have become a lot less accessible. As for 2017, it will be interesting to see what the National Ballet of Canada will do, since the company will be on tour in Paris on October 5. It has broadcast its segment on tour before, but this time it will be way outside its usual time zone. Instead of a continual relay around the world, there will be more of a zigzag across Europe. I think it could be fascinating to show a "countdown" to a performance rather than repeating the morning class+rehearsals format five times over, although I don't know how happy the dancers would be to have a camera roaming through the dressing rooms as they apply their makeup. I have a feeling the company will be ordering longer pre-recorded segments from its "guest" companies on the Eastern seaboard.
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